The Law Dictionary

Your Free Online Legal Dictionary • Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed.

IN CRIMINAL LAW Definition & Legal Meaning

Definition & Citations:

A charge, preferred before a magistrate having jurisdiction, that a person named (or an unknown person) has committed a specified offense, with an offer to prove the fact, to the end that a prosecution may be Instituted. It is a technical term, descriptive of proceedings before a magistrate. Hobbs v. Hill, 157 Mass. 556, 32 N. E 862; Com. v. Davis, 11 Pick. (Mass.) 436; U. S. v. Collins (D. C.) 79 Fed. 66; State v. Dodge Co., 20 Neb. 595, 31 N. W. 117. The complaint is an allegation, made before a proper magistrate, that a person has been guilty of a designated public offense. Code Ala. 188G,


This article contains general legal information but does not constitute professional legal advice for your particular situation. The Law Dictionary is not a law firm, and this page does not create an attorney-client or legal adviser relationship. If you have specific questions, please consult a qualified attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.