An indictment in the legal world refers to a formal written accusation or charge against an individual or entity that alleges that they have committed a criminal offense. It is typically issued by a grand jury or a prosecutor in a criminal case after they have gathered sufficient evidence to believe that a crime has been committed and that the person or entity named in the indictment is responsible for it.
An indictment outlines the specific charges, details of the alleged offense, and other relevant information. It serves as the foundation for the subsequent legal proceedings in a criminal case, providing notice to the accused of the charges they are facing and the basis for those charges.
Indictments are a critical part of the criminal justice system in many jurisdictions and are designed to ensure that individuals are informed of the allegations against them and have an opportunity to defend themselves in court. The issuance of an indictment does not indicate guilt; it’s a formal step in the legal process that initiates criminal proceedings and leads to a trial, plea negotiation, or other resolution of the case.