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date: 01 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines complicity within the framework of criminal law and theory and outlines recurrent normative problems as well as solutions. It considers structural questions that inform accomplice liability in different criminal systems, such as the mode of participation and whether complicity should be treated as an inchoate offense comparable to attempt or a separate crime. It looks at the unitary theory of perpetration and the conduct required to establish accomplice liability, including actions or omissions, practical assistance, or moral encouragement. It then evaluates the nature and extent of derivative liability, the dilemma presented by causation, and substantial and de minimis contributions by an accomplice. It describes the various static and dynamic mental elements that are often assigned to the concept of complicity and explains how a comparative approach can shed light on blind spots in various schools of thought about complicity, including whether it should be distinct from perpetration.

Keywords: complicity, criminal law, inchoate offence, unitary theory, accomplice, moral encouragement, derivative liability, causation, perpetration, mode of participation

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