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R v Hinks [1998] EWCA Crim 2105

Hinks, a young mother, befriended a 53 year old man called John Dolphin. He had been left money by his father and was naive, gullible and of limited intelligence. Over a period of 7 months, the appellant influenced, coerced and encouraged Mr Dolphin to withdraw sums, amounting to £60,000, from his building society account and for them subsequently to be deposited in the appellant's account. She was subsequently convicted of theft and appealed on the ground that the sums given were gifts which were valid in civil law.


Conviction upheld. An appropriation exists even where the victim consents to the appropriation and civil unlawfulness is not a constituent of the offence of theft.
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