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Miranda warning

n. the requirement, also called the Miranda rule, set by the U.S. Supreme Court in Miranda v. Arizona (1966) that prior to the time of arrest and any interrogation of a person suspected of a crime, he/she must be told that he/she has: the right to remain silent, the right to legal counsel, and the right to be told that anything he/she says can be used in court against him/her. The warnings are known as Miranda rights or just "rights." Further, if the accused person confesses to the authorities, the prosecution must prove to the judge that the defendant was informed of these rights and knowingly waived them, before the confession can be introduced in the defendant's criminal trial. The Miranda rule supposedly prevents self-incrimination in violation of the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Sometimes there is a question of admissibility of answers to questions made by the defendant before he/she was considered a prime suspect, raising a factual issue as to what is a prime suspect and when does a person become such a suspect?

See also: rights 

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The People's Law Dictionary by Gerald and Kathleen Hill Publisher Fine Communications