true bill

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True Bill

A term endorsed on an indictment to indicate that a majority of Grand Jury members found that the evidence presented to them was adequate to justify a prosecution.

true bill

n. the written decision of a grand jury (signed by the grand jury foreperson) that it has heard sufficient evidence from the prosecution to believe that an accused person probably committed a crime and should be indicted. Thus, the indictment is sent to the court. (See: indictment)

See: accusation

true bill

(US) the endorsement made on a bill of indictment by a grand jury certifying it to be supported by sufficient evidence to warrant committing the accused to trial.

TRUE BILL, practice. These words are endorsed on a bill of indictment, when a grand jury, after having heard the witnesses for the government, are of opinion that there is sufficient cause to put the defendant on his trial. Formerly, the endorsement was Billa vera, when legal proceedings were in Latin; it is still the practice to write on the back of the bill Ignoramus, when the jury do not find it to be a true bill. Vide Grand Jury.

References in periodicals archive ?
The grand jury's actual deliberations, as distinct from the evidence presented to them for consideration, were never made public nor was their rationale for failing to return a true bill ([section] 540.
When the question of whether to indict or return a no true bill is presented, all grand jurors have the right to comment on the evidence and to express their views of the matter.
7 When so justified it is your solemn duty to cause the accused person to be indicted; likewise, when an indictment is not justified, it is equally your solemn duty to clear the accused person by returning a "no true bill.
McCulloch was "hiding" behind the decision of the grand jury might have some force if McCulloch had simply announced the return of a no true bill and maintained the customary secrecy of grand jury proceedings.
1882)) ("We are satisfied that no paper can be regarded as an indictment without the signature of the prosecuting attorney, and the certificate of the foreman of the grand jury that it is a true bill.
McCulloch really was resolved not to prosecute Officer Wilson, return of a true bill would truly have put him in a cleft stick, forcing him to decide whether to take responsibility for overruling the grand jury's opinion or to take what he presumably thought an unwinnable case to trial.
He added that he could understand the human error that led prosecutor, judge and defense attorney to overlook the "no true bill.
Not the prosecutor, even though he signed the document 1 inch below the line that said `Not a True Bill,'" Richkind said outside the courtroom Tuesday.
A "no bill," returned far less frequently than true bills, means that the members of the jury voted not to indict.
In world, the l and d is in a shade in the counterfeits - The true bills have only the d.