General Question

_fonzo's avatar

What does a prosecutor do?

Asked by _fonzo (67 points ) April 7th, 2011

I am actually interested in what prosecutors do in various countries. I am from Portugal, but I still don’t know the answer totally for this country myself. (: Thanks for helping!

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6 Answers

marinelife's avatar

This book contains your answer.

Response moderated (Spam)
lynfromnm's avatar

In the US, the Prosecutor represents the State in court proceedings in criminal law. Prosecutors are in the office of the District Attorney in each jurisdiction.

WasCy's avatar

In general:

As @lynfromnm (Have you been away for awhile? I haven’t seen you in forever.) said, the prosecutor represents the state (or federal prosecutors represent the US government) in criminal trials against defendants.

Part of their job is based on bringing charges against those arrested or accused of crimes and driving investigations to build the case. In addition, they often negotiate with defense attorneys for plea bargains, or for exchanges of “bigger fish” for “reduced charges”. For example, any prosecutor would gladly reduce a relatively minor charge for theft, drug use, disturbance of the peace, etc., for an assault conviction of a “worse” defendant, or especially a capital or other infamous crime such as a major robbery.

In some cases prosecutors also conduct Grand Jury “investigations” into crimes and alleged crimes (pretty much running a dog-and-pony show for a select audience) to have an indictment handed down (to him, for a targeted defendant) rather than making a case to a judge for the same thing. That, I don’t quite understand myself.

perspicacious's avatar

Watch Law and Order

lynfromnm's avatar

@WasCy I’ve been here – I guess we have gravitated toward different questions? good to see you!
Prosecutors also work with law enforcement to gather evidence which they evaluate to determine which charges may be appropriate. In the US, prosecutors are always attorneys.
I hoped you get some answers from other countries because I’m interested in what differences there may be.

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