how can you be indited on charges that you have never been arrested for.

UPDATED: May 21, 2009

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how can you be indited on charges that you have never been arrested for.

I was indited without even knowing that I have charges. I never been arrestes nor have I ever been in front of a mag.court judge to way my rights to a prelim.

Asked on May 21, 2009 under Criminal Law, West Virginia


B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

Indictments are handed up by a grand jury.  The prosecutor presents witnesses and evidence to the grand jury, and asks them to find probable cause to bring people to trial on the charges he or she wants.  It's very unusual for the grand jury to refuse.  The grand jury usually just gets the prosecutor's side of the case.

"Surprise" indictments like this aren't entirely unusual, particularly in conspiracy cases where the police have wiretapped telephone conversations.

Indictable offenses are almost always felonies, with sentences that can be a year or more in jail.  You need a criminal defense attorney, and one place to look for one is our website,

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