Bounty Ended with 50 reputation awarded by Adam Zerner
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And to indirectly answer the question - the reason players are often not prosecuted is because "In the public interest" incorporates an element of public opinion. If a certain action has become (or always been seen as) acceptable, it is unlikely to be prosecuted. For example minor fouls in games, or accidental fouls causing injuries. The other primary reason is that the victim chooses not to press charges (although this isn't required, and the police are able to press charges themselves, it is often taken into account)

And to indirectly answer the question - the reason players are often not prosecuted is because "In the public interest" incorporates an element of public opinion. If a certain action has become (or always been seen as) acceptable, it is unlikely to be prosecuted. For example minor fouls in games, or accidental fouls causing injuries.

And to indirectly answer the question - the reason players are often not prosecuted is because "In the public interest" incorporates an element of public opinion. If a certain action has become (or always been seen as) acceptable, it is unlikely to be prosecuted. For example minor fouls in games, or accidental fouls causing injuries. The other primary reason is that the victim chooses not to press charges (although this isn't required, and the police are able to press charges themselves, it is often taken into account)

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In terms of withinWell the game then yes, as you say, therefirst thing is to stop working from this from the wrong direction: There is no crime committedlaw that makes it legal to assault someone: the law only makes it illegal to assault someone (eg in the UK, the Criminal Justice Act 1988 and the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 apply). The law states that it is illegal to assault someone. So let's explore how sport works.

This is because inIn most legal systems, you are able to give consent for certain activities or risks. This is also why certain other activities (for example, things a couple may enjoy in their own home) are not necessarily assault if consented to.

HoweverEssentially, there are generally limits to thistherefore, your consent gives the person doing the hitting the legal excuse (a little different to a normal excuse for forgetting your homework or being late to work): or a defense that their actions were reasonable. This stops the issue being the law, therefore, and becomes an issue of what does/doesn't constitute an "excuse".

It is not therefore a question of "What law allows you to commit a crime during sport?" instead it is really one of "Exactly how much consent can a person give, to allow consent to be used as an excuse, and at what point is that consent no longer an excuse?"

For example in R v Brown (UK Case Law) it was established that you cannot give unlimited consent. Similarly in every jurisdiction I'm aware of, that consent is only able to be given within the realms of the rules of the sport. As soon as the rules are broken, a crime may have been committed.

I won't go into the details of R v Brown here, as I'm not convinced that it's suitable for SE (although I'm sure you can find it), but to give a more sport-related example, R v Donovan established that

No person can license another to commit a crime, if (the jury) were satisfied that the blows struck ... were likely or intended to do bodily harm ... they ought to convict ... only if they were not so satisfied (was it) necessary to consider the further question whether the prosecution had negatived consent.

Again, similar case law or exemptions exist in most jurisdictions. Essentially what this establishes is that if the intent is to cause harm, rather than to undertake the sport or activity to which consent has been given, it is still a crime

In terms of within the game then yes, as you say, there is no crime committed.

This is because in most legal systems, you are able to give consent for certain activities or risks. This is also why certain other activities (for example, things a couple may enjoy in their own home) are not necessarily assault if consented to.

However, there are generally limits to this consent. For example in R v Brown (UK Case Law) it was established that you cannot give unlimited consent. Similarly in every jurisdiction I'm aware of, that consent is only able to be given within the realms of the rules of the sport. As soon as the rules are broken, a crime may have been committed.

Well the first thing is to stop working from this from the wrong direction: There is no law that makes it legal to assault someone: the law only makes it illegal to assault someone (eg in the UK, the Criminal Justice Act 1988 and the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 apply). The law states that it is illegal to assault someone. So let's explore how sport works.

In most legal systems, you are able to give consent for certain activities or risks. This is also why certain other activities (for example, things a couple may enjoy in their own home) are not necessarily assault if consented to.

Essentially, therefore, your consent gives the person doing the hitting the legal excuse (a little different to a normal excuse for forgetting your homework or being late to work): or a defense that their actions were reasonable. This stops the issue being the law, therefore, and becomes an issue of what does/doesn't constitute an "excuse".

It is not therefore a question of "What law allows you to commit a crime during sport?" instead it is really one of "Exactly how much consent can a person give, to allow consent to be used as an excuse, and at what point is that consent no longer an excuse?"

For example in R v Brown (UK Case Law) it was established that you cannot give unlimited consent. Similarly in every jurisdiction I'm aware of, that consent is only able to be given within the realms of the rules of the sport. As soon as the rules are broken, a crime may have been committed.

I won't go into the details of R v Brown here, as I'm not convinced that it's suitable for SE (although I'm sure you can find it), but to give a more sport-related example, R v Donovan established that

No person can license another to commit a crime, if (the jury) were satisfied that the blows struck ... were likely or intended to do bodily harm ... they ought to convict ... only if they were not so satisfied (was it) necessary to consider the further question whether the prosecution had negatived consent.

Again, similar case law or exemptions exist in most jurisdictions. Essentially what this establishes is that if the intent is to cause harm, rather than to undertake the sport or activity to which consent has been given, it is still a crime

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(Note that some of the below may be UK specific, but the general principle applies in many other jurisdictions)

In terms of within the game then yes, as you say, there is no crime committed.

This is because in most legal systems, you are able to give consent for certain activities or risks. This is also why certain other activities (for example, things a couple may enjoy in their own home) are not necessarily assault if consented to.

However, there are generally limits to this consent. For example in R v Brown (UK Case Law) it was established that you cannot give unlimited consent. Similarly in every jurisdiction I'm aware of, that consent is only able to be given within the realms of the rules of the sport. As soon as the rules are broken, a crime may have been committed.

The question after this is then generally one of whether it is in the public interest to prosecute, and often (but not always) the victim's wishes are taken into account.

In some cases, the sportsman is prosecuted: for example this British football player who assaulted an opponent. In other cases there is either insufficient evidence, or insufficient interest in the prosecution.

In many cases where the rules are broken but no serious harm is done, for example where rules are broken accidentally or in a minor way, the police or prosecution service (or equivalent) may simply regard the matter as sufficiently dealt with. This is the same as with most other cases, where not every instance of assault is necessarily prosecuted: two teenage brothers fighting may not result in a prosecution, or an assault in the street may not carry enough evidence.

And to indirectly answer the question - the reason players are often not prosecuted is because "In the public interest" incorporates an element of public opinion. If a certain action has become (or always been seen as) acceptable, it is unlikely to be prosecuted. For example minor fouls in games, or accidental fouls causing injuries.