criminal law and procedure


Generally, freedom from legal obligation to perform actions or to suffer penalties, as in "immunity from prosecution". Specific types of immunity are separately defined and discussed.

See also:Diplomatic immunityFederal Tort Claims...

Immunity from Prosecution

The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution prohibits the government from forcing witnesses to give self-incriminating testimony in criminal cases. Courts may evade this prohibition and force reluctant witnesses to testify by granting them...


To select a jury and assign the jury to decide a court case.


The act of selecting a jury from a list of potential jurors.

Impeachment of a witness

At trial, impeachment is the process of attacking the accuracy of witnesses' testimony. For example, if a witness's testimony at trial contradicts her earlier sworn statements, one or both parties might bring up the sworn statement to impeach her...

Implied Consent

Consent when surrounding circumstances exist that would lead a reasonable person to believe that this consent had been given, although no direct, express, or explicit words of agreement had been uttered. For example, implied consent to a contract can...


In a criminal proceeding, when the court or police take possession of personal property. The property may be returned to the owner at the end of the proceeding or it may be forfeited to the state (for example, in the case of illegal drugs).


To put a person in prison or jail or otherwise confine him or her as punishment for committing a crime.

In Absentia

(in ab-sen-shah) Latin for "in absence," or more fully, in one's absence.

In Limine

A Latin term meaning "at the threshold".

See motion in limine.