Under New York’s Criminal Procedure Law, CPL 190.65(1), a Grand Jury may indict a person when the evidence before it both establishes all the elements of the crime and also establishes reasonable cause to believe that the accused committed the crime to be charged.
The first prong requires the People present a prima facie case; the second relates to the degree of certainty grand jurors must possess to indict.
Criminal lawyer buffalo ny know reasonable cause is not the same as “beyond a reasonable doubt” or “moral certainty.” Where Defense counsel submits a motion to dismiss an indictment under CPL 210.20(1)(b), the inquiry of the reviewing court is limited to the legal sufficiency of the evidence. In other words, the court may not examine the adequacy of the proof to establish reasonable cause, since that inquiry is exclusively the province of the Grand Jury.
Criminal lawyer buffalo ny must also recognize, in determining whether the People have reached this stage, that all questions as to the quality or weight of the proof are not relevant at this early stage in the process.
Again, if you find yourself going through the criminal process, it is very important to find lawyers in buffalo ny free consultation