Legal Dictionary

proxy murder

Legal Definition of proxy murder

Related terms

  • proxy
  • murder
  • proxy marriage - common amongst European monarchs, where one party is not present in person to their marriage to the other
  • proxy voting - a vote cast on behalf of an absent person
  • proxy statement - information published related to a U.S. stockholders' meeting

Definition of proxy murder

Further reading

A proxy murder is a murder in which the murderer does so at the behest of another, acting as his or her proxy.

The archetypal example of this would be taking a contract out on someone else, in which a hit man commits the act of murder on a specified target for the client, e.g. in exchange for money; this would be a contract killing. Another example is a person who manipulates a lover into murdering for him or her. One reference would be Charles Manson who sent his family and followers to commit murders, which he himself was later sentenced for.

The person instigating a proxy murder may or may not be legally guilty of the crime of murder; this legal distinction varies by nation (and within the United States, by state). However, all jurisdictions recognize the criminal nature of the actions taken by the instigator, and they may be charged under any of a variety of statutes, including murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and/or accessory to murder.

Proxy murders may skew crime statistics, as the use of a proxy may conceal the true motives of the person.


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1.     lex causae
2.     lex situs
3.     landed property
4.     lex fori
5.     lex loci celebrationis
6.     AORO
7.     lex loci delicti commissi
8.     prejudice
9.     adjudication order
10.     Miranda warning