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A-G Ref (No 1 of 1983) [1985] QB 182 Court of Appeal

The defendant, a police woman, received an overpayment in her wages by mistake. She had noticed that she had received more than she was entitled to but did not say anything to her employer. She did not withdraw any of the money from her bank account. The trial judge directed the jury to acquit. The Attorney General referred a question to the Court of Appeal.


It was possible for a theft conviction to arise where the defendant had not withdrawn the money. There was a legal obligation to return the money received by mistake.
Back to lecture outline on theft in Criminal law