Peniamina v The Queen [2020] HCA 47 (09 December 2020) (Bell, Gageler, Keane, Gordon and Edelman JJ)


Catchwords:


Criminal law – Defences – Provocation – Where appellant killed his wife in circumstances that left it open to find he was angered by belief she had been unfaithful and planned to leave him – Where appellant pleaded not guilty to murder on basis that killing resulted from loss of self-control caused by provocation by deceased – Where appellant contended at trial that state of loss of self-control excited by deceased’s conduct in grabbing knife, threatening him with it and cutting his right palm – Where s 304(3) of Criminal Code (Qld) excluded defence of provocation (save in circumstances of most extreme and exceptional character) in case of unlawful killing of accused’s domestic partner where sudden provocation “based on” anything done, or believed to have been done, by deceased to end or change nature of relationship or indicate in any way that relationship may, should or will end or change (“to change relationship”) – Whether exclusion of defence in s 304(3) confined (save in circumstances of most extreme and exceptional character) to cases where conduct of deceased relied upon as causative of accused’s loss of self‑control consists of thing done, or believed to have been done, by deceased to change relationship – Whether operation of s 304(3) to exclude defence question of law.

Words and phrases – “based on”, “causation simpliciter”, “causative potency”, “caused by”, “domestic killing”, “domestic relationship”, “elements of the defence”, “loss of self-control”, “nominated conduct”, “partial defence”, “provocation”, “provocative conduct”, “question of law”, “sudden provocation”, “to change the nature of the relationship”, “true defence”, “wider connection”.