From Late Latin actus reus (“guilty act”), from Latin āctus (“act”) + reus (“guilty”), after mens rea.
- (UK) IPA(key): /ˌaktəsˈɹeɪəs/, /ˌaktəsˈɹiːəs/
actus reus (plural actus rei)
- (law) An act or series of acts, considered as separate from the intentions or state of mind of the perpetrator in the context of criminal law. [from 20th c.]
2011, Steven Pinker, The Better Angels of Our Nature, Penguin 2012, page 610:
- A brute emotional reflex to the actus reus, the bad act (‘She killed her husband! Shame!’), could trigger an urge for retribution regardless of her intention.