Criminal Law- Covid-19 Scenario Essay Assignment Answer

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  • Topic: Criminal law
  • Document Type: Essay (any type)
  • Subject: Law
  • Number of Words: 1500
  • Citation/Referencing Style: AGLC4 referencing very important



Problem Question 1

This homicide problem question is a Covid-19 scenario. This is intended to be topical and relevant to your current lives. I understand that this is a difficult time for everyone, and particularly for any student who has caught Covid-19 or has a loved one who has caught the disease. Please remember that Campus Wellbeing offers free support services to students in need. Stay safe and get vaccinated if and when you are able. Andrew


Mike is a Covid-19 conspiracy theorist. He spends a lot of time doing his own ‘research’ online. He does not believe that the virus really exists – he believes that it was made up by a global alliance of big Pharma, the UN, Bill Gates and Beyond in order to achieve one-world government. He has not been vaccinated despite being eligible.


Mike’s wife, Rachel, gets sick with flu-like symptoms. Not being quite as much of a conspiracy theorist as her husband, Rachel gets herself tested for Covid-19. The test returns positive. NSW Health tells Rachel that Mike and her two teenage children, Harvey and Donna, are all close contacts and must get tested and also isolate for a minimum of fourteen days. NSW Health also contacts Mike directly and tells him the same information.


Mike thinks that Rachel has lost the plot.


“You can isolate if you want”, he tells her. “I’m going on a holiday.”

The next day Mike, Harvey and Donna set off for Summer Bay. The three of them have not been tested for Covid-19. They drive to Summer Bay, towing their caravan. This requires a six-hour drive from where they live in Sydney. Leaving Sydney for a holiday is prohibited by the Public Health (COVID-19 Additional Restrictions for Delta Outbreak) Order 2021.


Summer Bay is a small beach side town in northern NSW. It is popular with both retirees and those seeking an alternative lifestyle. It also has a significant Indigenous population. The Covid-19 vaccination rate is much lower in Summer Bay than it is for NSW as a whole. At the time when Mike, Harvey and Donna arrive in Summer Bay there are zero Covid-19 cases in northern NSW. Although Sydney is under lock down conditions, Summer Bay is not under lock down at this time.


Believing Covid-19 to be a conspiracy, Mike always refuses to use QR codes. He believes that QR codes allow the government to spy on him. He also tries to avoid wearing a mask, but will on occasion if it is the only way to access goods or services that he wants.


Mike, Harvey and Donna stop once, for fuel and lunch, before arriving at Summer Bay in the early evening. They stay with Marcus, Mike’s brother. He has a semi-rural property where they set up their caravan.


Over the next seven days Mike, Harvey and Donna enjoy various holiday activities in the Summer Bay region. They go to the beach, to pubs, cafes and restaurants, to the movies, to shops and on bush walks.


On the fourth day after arriving in Summer Bay Mike begins to develop some flu-like symptoms. He ignores the symptoms, not wanting to spoil his holiday. By the seventh day Mike is very unwell, and Marcus takes him to Summer Bay Hospital. At the hospital Mike is diagnosed with Covid-19.


Contact tracers from NSW Health attempt to interview Mike but he refuses to co-operate. His failure to use QR codes means that his movements are difficult to track. Summer Bay goes into lock down, but it is too late to prevent an outbreak. The outbreak is eventually brought under control by a combination of the lock down and a rapid mass vaccination campaign. Before that time, 450 people in the Summer Bay area contract Covid-19. All 450 of those cases are traced back to Mike using genomic sequencing.


Lily was a patient at Summer Bay Hospital when Marcus brought Mike in. Lily was in palliative care and her immune system was suppressed by the treatment she was receiving. Lily was one of the 450 Summer Bay cases and died from Covid-19 two weeks after contracting the disease.


Assess Mike’s liability for the death of Lily under s 18 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).

You do NOT need to consider complete defences (self-defence, necessity, duress).

Word limit: 1500 words


Criminal Law Problem Solving Rubric

There are 3 criteria which total 30 marks.


Structure (8 marks)

Structures answer in a logical order. Clearly identifies and considers legal elements separately and thoroughly. Introduction identifies relevant offences, burdens and standards of proof. Conclusion clearly identifies outcome based on analysis of problem.


Critical Analysis (14 marks)

Identifies and comprehends factual and legal issues. Determines strong and weak arguments. Identifies relevant and irrelevant facts. Integrates analysis of fact and law. Integrates analysis of relevant statute and case law.


Expression & Referencing (8 marks)

Use of plain English including: clear and correct sentence structure; correct spelling, grammar and punctuation; clear, fluent and persuasive expression. Correct referencing in accordance with AGLC4.