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 ?
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.