Analyzing A Criminal Law Indictment Or Information
Absent a waiver by the defendant, all federal felonies must be charged by grand jury indictment. Misdemeanors may be prosecuted by information. After a person is arrested, the government has a limited amount of time in which to file an indictment. An indictment must state every element of the criminal charge. An indictment must also contain a plain, concise and definite statement of the essential facts establishing the criminal charge. The indictment should provide the approximate dates, general location and sufficient detail regarding the behavior establishing the crime so that the defendant is adequately informed of the crime charged.