Criminal Defense GLOSSARY
Glossary of Criminal Defense Terms
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Malicious prosecution: An action instituted with intention
of injuring the defendant and without probable cause, and which
terminates in favor of the person prosecuted.
Magistrate judges: Judicial officers who assist U.S.
district judges in getting cases ready for trial, who may decide
some criminal and civil trials when both parties agree to have the
case heard by a magistrate judge instead of a judge.
Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime
than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
Mistrial: An invalid trial, caused by fundamental error.
When a mistrial is declared, the trial must start again from the
selection of the jury.