Brought to trial

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Brought to trial means to calendar a legal case for a hearing, or to bring a defendant to the bar of justice. The simplest definition is "the commencement of the trial in a court by formally calling and swearing in of the witnesses to initiate the trial proceedings."[1][citation needed] However, much like pro rata, it has several different, ambiguous meanings and examples used in the law. To bring to trial is when the process is ongoing.

Political, war, and other infamous crimes[edit]

Most often, the terms brought to trial, bring to trial, brought to justice and bring to justice refer to the prosecution at trial of alleged war criminals[2] and political prisoners,[3][4] as well as those accused of treason or misprision of treason, sexual assault, and other infamous crimes.[5][6][7]

Speedy trial[edit]

In some cases, the context of the term actually indicates a speedy trial issue, as guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution.[8][9][10][11]

Related terms[edit]

A number of related terms and meanings exist:

  • "Arraign, litigate, lodge, bring a complaint, bring to view evidence, exhibit, manifest and bring together, [and] accumulate." [12]
  • "Lawsuit, suit, suit in law, suit at law, litigation, prosecution, bring a case before the court or bar, [and] bring to justice." [13]
  • To "call to the bar, ... take silk, take to the law, bring to the bar, put on trial, pull up, accuse, ... file a claim, [and] inform against." [14]
  • When the parties in an mediation or settlement conference can not come to an alternate dispute resolution, the action is brought to trial.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Legal explanations web site
  2. ^ B'TSelem Press Release about bringing to trial those Palestinians responsible for alleged war crimes Archived December 26, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Amnesty International Press Release about Haitian political prisoners Archived December 1, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Amnesty International press release about Vietnamese dissident to be brought to trial
  5. ^ Court TV article mentioning "Brought to trial" in context Archived August 24, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ "Draft Dodgers Brought to Trial"[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Article about Jose Padilla being brought to trial
  8. ^ 2007 California Rules of Court, Rule 8.913, found at California Rules of Court
  9. ^ Nebraska statutes, found at
  10. ^ Idaho statutes section 19-3501, found at Idaho state web site
  11. ^ New York Criminal Procedure Law (CPL) section 30.30, found at NY State web site
  12. ^ Burton, W.C.. Burton's Legal Thesaurus, p. 597.
  13. ^ Chapman, R.L. & Chapman, P.M. (1989). Roget's International Thesaurus, p. 767.
  14. ^ Grumley, C.P. (n.d.) Roget's Thesaurus, p. 977.