R v Stephens

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R v Stephens (1866) LR 1 QB 702 is an English criminal law, land law and UK public law case decided by the Queen's Bench that applied a strict liability standard to the violation of a criminal statute prohibiting the dumping of refuse into a river.


The defendant owned a quarry where refuse was dumped into a nearby river. The owner claimed he had no knowledge of the dumping and so should not be liable.


The defendant quarry owner was held criminally liable even though he had no knowledge of the dumping.[1]


  1. ^ Bonnie, R.J. et al. Criminal Law, Second Edition. Foundation Press, New York, NY: 2004, p. 252