not proven

(redirected from Scottish verdict)
Also found in: Dictionary, Encyclopedia.

not proven

the verdict in a Scottish criminal trial that amounts to an acquittal but that is not the same as the verdict of NOT GUILTY. In the 17th century, practice developed such that the jury found facts alleged by the prosecution either proven or not proven, and it was then for the judge to convert this to an appropriate level of guilt. In 1728, however, a jury returned a verdict of not guilty, leaving thereafter three verdicts available. The consensus appears to be that the not proven verdict is available where there is insufficient evidence to convict but suspicion still attaches to the accused. Whether or not this is satisfactory is often debated.
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
subject with a dollop of skepticism--or at least with the old Scottish verdict of not proven.
The uniquely Scottish verdict of "Not proven" was returned against Roberts.
All in all, we can only give the familiar Scottish verdict of "Not Proven" to the case being presented here.
In the absence of recent and reliable data, the safest conclusion is to fall back on the old Scottish verdict, "Case for deliberation not proven."

Full browser ?