plea bargain

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plea bargain

n. in criminal procedure, a negotiation between the defendant and his attorney on one side and the prosecutor on the other, in which the defendant agrees to plead "guilty" or "no contest" to some crimes, in return for reduction of the severity of the charges, dismissal of some of the charges, the prosecutor's willingness to recommend a particular sentence, or some other benefit to the defendant. Sometimes one element of the bargain is that the defendant reveal information such as location of stolen goods, names of others participating in the crime, or admission of other crimes (such as a string of burglaries). The judge must agree to the result of the plea bargain before accepting the sentence. If he does not, then the bargain is cancelled. Reasons for the bargaining include a desire to cut down on the number of trials, danger to the defendant of a long term in prison if convicted after trial, and the ability to get information on criminal activity from the defendant. There are three dangers: a) an innocent defendant may be pressured into a confession and plea out of fear of a severe penalty if convicted; b) particularly vicious criminals will get lenient treatment and be back "on the street" in a short time; c) results in unequal treatment. Public antipathy to plea bargaining has led to some state statutes prohibiting the practice, but informal discussions can get around the ban. (See: plea, cop a plea)

References in periodicals archive ?
In her plea agreement, Jessica Plushkis admitted to aiding and abetting her husband in committing two of those robberies in December 2017 in Algonquin and Arlington Heights.
Under the plea agreement, the Government was bound to advocate for a within-Guidelines sentence; it fulfilled that obligation.
According to the plea agreement, in August 2013 Paris forwarded Woods an application for Ecclesia to receive a $200,000 GIF grant.
    Criminal Law Drug Conspiracy Plea Agreement Appeal Waivers Where defendants charged in a drug conspiracy signed a plea agreement that included a waiver of the right to appeal, the record showed that the defendants knowingly and voluntarily accepted the agreements and waived their right to appeal, and enforcing the waivers would not result in a miscarriage of justice, so the waivers are enforced and their appeals are dismissed.
Under the terms of a plea agreement, he will serve a life sentence.
The actor reached a plea agreement with prosecutors in October in which he admitted he possessed images of prepubescent children.
Nirschl's final sentence, however, will be decided in March by a federal judge who is under no obligation to accept the terms of the plea agreement.
We have a hint in the "Statement of the Offense" that accompanies the plea agreement. The prosecutors say that Flynn cleared his comments to Kislyak beforehand with an unnamed official who is described as "a senior official of the Presidential Transition Team" who was staying with Trump at Mar-a-Lago.
"The defendant will provide sworn, complete and truthful testimony to the state of Florida as directed by the Office of Statewide Prosecution, State Attorney's Office, or law enforcement, identifying all persons known to him to be involved or have been involved in criminal activity related to the defendant's charges or persons involved," according to the plea agreement. "The state of Florida is relying on the multiple, consistent prior oral statements given by the defendant."
Supreme Court after allegations of racist testimony from an expert witness, had his sentence reduced to life in prison Tuesday after reaching a plea agreement with Harris County prosecutors.
486 from July 15th, 2010, through which two institutions have been introduced for speeding up the criminal trials solving: the judgment in case the defendant admitted the deed/deeds put on his/her account, completely, and the special procedure of guilty plea agreement which can be entered into in the phase of criminal prosecution, only after the criminal proceedings were put to motion, in writing, between the prosecutor and the defendant/defendants, for one or more deed(s) for which the criminal proceedings were put to motion.