In the state of Nevada, when a criminal case is initiated, the first pleading is called an indictment or an information, according to N.R.S. 173.015. N.R.S. 173.035 explains that the state can file an information after a preliminary examination or when a preliminary examination has been waived. An indictment or information must be submitted in accordance with certain requirements that have been set forth in N.R.S. 173.075.
It is important to understand what an indictment or information means, because when these pleadings are submitted to the court, it marks the formal beginning of the case against you. The terms are used throughout many different sections of Nevada’s code of criminal procedure, as laws related to warrants, summonses, and bail are all affected by indictments or by an information being submitted against a defendant.
One of the parts of Nevada law where the terms indicted, indictment, information, and informed against are used is within Title 15, which is the title of the section of Nevada code related to crimes and punishments. It is important to understand exactly what these terms mean within this part of Nevada law. A Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer can provide insight into the definitions of indictment, information, informed against, and indicated so you can better understand how these legal terms can impact your legal rights and affect your involvement with the criminal justice process.
Title 15 of Nevada law is the part of Nevada law which explains all of the illegal conduct in the state of Nevada. In other words, the statutes found within different chapters of Title 15 define all of the different crimes a defendant could potentially commit, and all of the different behaviors that are illegal. There are crimes against persons, crimes against property, and crimes against the state defined in Title 15, along with many other specific kinds of crimes.
The terms indictment, indicted, information, and informed against are used throughout Title 15, but you cannot just assume you know exactly what these words mean. You’ll need to get the official definition that is applicable to the statutes in Title 15 and that is accepted by law. The definitions applicable to all of the different statutes in Title 15 are found in Chapter 193, which is the Chapter of Title 15 that sets forth general provisions applicable throughout the title.
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Within Chapter 193, many different words are defined. The definitions that are found within this Chapter apply to all statutes throughout Title 15, and are the definitions the prosecutor and defendant must use every time a particular defined word is mentioned. For example, N.R.S. 193.0155 defines the words indicted, indictment, information, and information against. The definitions of these words in N.R.S. 193.0155 apply everywhere in Title 15 where these four particular words are found.
According to N.R.S. 193.0155, the terms indicted and the terms indictment include informed against and information. Likewise, the terms informed against and information include indicted and indictment.
Essentially, this is a complicated way of saying there is no material difference between these words for purposes of the statutes found within Title 15. If one of the statutes in Title 15 uses the term indicted, this word “indicted” also encompasses information. If one of the statutes uses the terms “information against,” this also encompasses situations where there is an indictment.
Understanding legal terms of art can be very complicated. While you may assume that words simply have their plain meaning and that you can understand the words that you hear in criminal charges, this may not necessarily be the case. It is the definitions found in Chapter 193 that matter when it comes to understanding the meaning of words in Title 15 of Nevada’s laws defining criminal behavior.
A Las Vegas criminal attorney at LV Criminal Defense can assist you in understanding the words used in criminal charges against you and can help you to raise strategic defenses based on the elements of Nevada crimes as defined by law. Give us a call today to find out more.
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