n many years, it has been common place for corporations to be prosecuted for criminal offences in United Kingdom. NumerousActs of Parliament contain provisions aim specifically to make body corporate liable for the offences.Even if there is no such provision pertaining to criminal liabilitytowards corporation, the
Interpretation Act 1978 (UK)
providesthat, subject to the appearance of a contrary intention, the wordµperson¶ in a statute or subordinate legislation is to be construedas including ³a body of person corporate or incorporate´.This definition applies to any Act ³whenever passed relating to anoffence punishable on indictment or on summary conviction´.The first
nterpretation Act to contain this provision was enactedin 1889, but an identical provision was enacted as early as the
Criminal Law Act of 1827
t has now been held repeatedly thatcompanies may be indicted for common law offences as well asstatutory, and for offences requiring proof of criminal state of mind as well as those of strict liability.