jury nullification

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jury nullification

n.
Refusal of a jury to find a defendant guilty, even when the facts establish guilt, because of a conclusion that conviction would be contrary to some other concept of justice.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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The jury, they maintain, can exercise a veto, for no defendant may be convicted without the concurrence of the legislature (writing the law), the executive (typically signing the law), the prosecutor (deciding to prosecute), the judge (allowing prosecution to proceed), and the jury (declining to exercise its nullification power).(107) Central to the theory of the jury veto is an understanding of nullification as having the potential only to aid the criminal defendant.