: English for Law Students. 2 year. Part 2 - ( ..)


: 1775

Unit 4 trial steps and procedure


A1. How are trials conducted in Russian Federation? Work in pairs to decide what stages a trial normally includes.


B1. Study the words below and try to memorize them.



equity case ,

action at law ;

waive ( , , ) confront 1) 2) ;

unanimous ,

acquit 1) , ( ) | 2) ( , )

convict ( ) ;

postponement ;

county 1) ( ) 2) ( )

venue , ;

hostility , ,


obtain ,

suppress ; ;

to grant a motion deliberation 1) , 2) 3) ,

address , ,

adduce 1) , ; ( , )

summation ,

testify , ,

inference ,


charge ; |

exposition ,


guidance 1) 2) objectionable retire

terminate ()

B2. Read the text and be ready to do the tasks below.


Trials are usually held before a judge sitting alone, a referee, or a judge and

jury. Civil cases are divided into two classes: equitycases, which are usually tried by a judge sitting without a jury; and actions at law, which are usually tried before a jury. In civil cases the right to a trial by jury may, in most jurisdictions, be waived. In some states the defendant may waive the right to be tried by a jury even in criminal cases, although in many jurisdictions the rule obtains that in all cases involving the commission of felonies the defendant must be tried by a jury.

A criminal defendant who pleads not guilty is entitled to a public trial and has the right to be present at the trial. The criminal defendant must be given the opportunity to confront and cross-examine the prosecution's witnesses and to present evidence in his or her own defense. The criminal defendant generally is entitled to a trial by jury in all felony cases and in any misdemeanor case punishable by more than six months imprisonment. A typical state jury trial includes between 6 and 12 jurors, who must decide unanimously whether to acquit or convict. A few states permit conviction on less than a unanimous verdict in some cases. Federal juries consist of 12 persons, and their verdict must be unanimous.

Preparation for Trial

The defendant is entitled to a speedy trial, although not so speedy as to deny

sufficient time to prepare an adequate defense. The defendant may ask for a postponement if more time is needed. Although the defendant is entitled to be tried in the county or district where the crime was committed, he or she may file a motion asking the court for a change of venuethat is, a move of the trial to a court in another locality. A change of venue is common when a fair trial in the district would be impossible due to pretrial publicity or public hostility to the defendant. Prior to the trial, the prosecutor is required to turn over to the defendant information favorable to him or her on issues that will be tried.

The defense may file a variety of pretrial motions objecting to various aspects of the prosecution. These motions may challenge the sufficiency and form of the charging documents or the composition and conduct of the grand jury. Or they might request that the prosecution share the evidence it has obtained. If the defense believes that the prosecutions evidence has been obtained illegally, the defendant may file a motion to suppress the evidence. If the court grants such a motion, the prosecutor will not be permitted to introduce the evidence at trial.

Steps of trial

Briefly, a jury trial consists of (1) the selection of the jury; (2) opening

statements by prosecution and defense attorneys during which each side

states what it expects to prove; (3) the presentation of evidence (first by the prosecution, then by the defense) and the questioning of witnesses; (4) closing arguments in which each side states what the evidence has proved or failed to prove; (5) instructions by the trial judge to the jury concerning the law to be applied to the facts that the jury may find; (6) the jury's deliberations and verdict; and (7) the sentence, if the verdict is guilty.

Opening Statements and Trial Procedures

The opening remarks to the jury, in many jurisdictions, can be waived in both

civil and criminal cases. If not waived, it is customary for the attorney for the plaintiff in a civil case and the prosecuting officer in a criminal case to make the first opening address to the jury, which consists of a statement of what the plaintiff or the prosecution intends to prove. The defendant's attorney then makes an opening address to the jury, which consists of a similar statement as to what proof will be adduced on behalf of the defendant. In criminal cases, in a number of jurisdictions, the opening address on behalf of the defendant is not made until the prosecution has completed its part of the case.

Presentation of evidence

All parties are entitled to present evidence. The testimony of witnesses who

testify at trial is evidence. Evidence may also take the form of physical exhibits, such as a gun or a photograph.

Summations and the Jury Charge

At the conclusion of the case, it is customary for both sides to make their

summations, which consist of comment by counsel with regard to the testimony of the various witnesses who have testified at the trial, and the inferences to be drawn there from. In both civil and criminal cases, counsel for the defendant usually sums up first, and the attorney for the plaintiff or the prosecuting officer concludes.

After the summations, the court charges the jury. The charge of the court

consists of a statement and an exposition of the rules of law applicable to the issues in the case, for the guidance of the jury. After the charge is made, counsel for either party can take exception to those portions of the charge which they consider objectionable and make requests that additional charges be given by the court.

The Verdict

At the conclusion of the charge, the jury retires from the courtroom to decide

on its verdict. The verdict of a jury terminates the trial. In a case tried before a judge sitting alone, the decision of the judge constitutes a termination of the trial.

B3. Answer the questions to the text.

1. Who are trials held by?

2. Who are federal juries consist of?

3. How a change of venue is achieved and when and where is it necessary?

4. Name the steps of the trial and describe them in short.

5. What are summations of the both sides and what are they consist of?

6. When and how the jury decides on its verdict?

B4. Fill in the necessary words, then check yourself by finding the correct answer in the text.

a. A criminal defendant who


b. The defendant may ask for a

not guilty is entitled to a public

if more time is needed.

c. The defense may file a variety of pretrial

objecting to various

aspects of the prosecution. If the defense believes that the

prosecutions evidence has been

illegally, the defendant may

file a motion to

the evidence.

d. The testimony of witnesses who e. After the summations, the court

at trial is evidence. the jury.

f. At the conclusion of the charge, the jury to decide on its verdict.

from the courtroom

B5. Find these phrases and expressions in the text.

a) ;

b) c)


e) , f)

g) ,

h) i) ;


k) l) ;




Study the following collocations with the word verdict and translate the sentences. Complete the table with the examples of your own.



After a six hour trial, the jury retired for a further

two hours before bringing a verdict of guilty.


The couple appealed to a higher court in

Guangzhou, which overturned that verdict in



After a week the jury had still not reached a verdict.

arrive at







C2. Paraphrase the following sentences from the text above. Start from the word(s) suggested.

1. By contrast most countries recognize that an individual who acts in ignorance of the facts of his action is not criminally responsible.

Criminal responsibility ..

2. Russian law is especially hard on those who have committed offenses while under the influence of alcohol.

Drunk offenders

3. The law recognizes that the use of even deadly force may be justified under some circumstances.

Deadly force..

C3. Fill the gaps with the missing words from the box.

deliberation; counsel; convict; unanimous; referee; acquit; testify; charge

1. The trial was held by a juvenile court

2. The resolution was affirmed by a

. vote.

3. His lawyer thought he had a good chance of being further evidence was found.

4. In due course, she was charged with and police constable in the execution of his duty.

at the trial, if no of obstruction of a

6. I'm prepared to night.

in court that I was in Carolyn's apartment that

7. They are still in the process of their

on that aspect.

8. He faces a

of armed robbery.

C4. Supply the table with the missing word forms.














C5. Match the terms with their Russian language equivalents.

1) subsequent prosecution 2) trademark prosecution 3) warranted prosecution 4) weak prosecution 5) juvenile criminal prosecution 6) legal prosecution 7) patent prosecution 8) private prosecution 9) prosecution of crime 10) prosecution of war 11) public prosecution 12) state prosecution

13) strong prosecution 14) criminal prosecution 15) federal prosecution

16) groundless prosecution 17) prosecution of criminal 18) prosecution of

patent application


b. (


d. e.

f. , g.




k. []

m. n.

o. ;

p. ,



D1. Make up 10 sentences using the phrases from the exercise above.

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