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Corpus Delicti?: Forensic Dimensions of the No-Body Murder

Corpus Delicti?: Forensic Dimensions of the No-Body Murder
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Author(s): Anna Chaussée (University of Winchester, UK)
Copyright: 2023
Pages: 36
Source title: Cases on Crimes, Investigations, and Media Coverage
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Liam James Leonard (University of Winchester, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9668-5.ch008


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Corpus delicti, or body of evidence, is a fundamental to criminal prosecutions. This contribution takes a more literal perspective by exploring the ‘no-body murder'. Body disposal is not a single event; it is a complex process that dynamically responds to social and environmental circumstances. This contribution explores the legislative response to no-body murders through the Prisoners Act 2020 and presents six dimensions explaining non-disclosure of location of victim remains. Four high-profile no-body cases are presented, demonstrating the complexities inherent in searching for the long-term missing, presumed dead. This chapter focuses on the offender deposition strategy, the operational response, and environmental dimensions that explain prisoner non-disclosure and the failures to detect clandestine depositions.

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