Words we use
Some of the words you'll hear in court or at Corrections sites may be unfamiliar. If you come across a word you're not sure about email us and we'll add its meaning here.
Being charged means police have investigated a crime and found there is enough evidence to take someone to court (this is the stage after arrest but before conviction).
In custody is another word for being in prison.
Being in police custody means being required to remain in a police station or with Police.
Being on police bail means a person is living in the community but must follow certain conditions set by Police.
Being on court bail means a person is living in the community but must follow certain conditions set by a judge.
Being remanded in custody means being required to remain in prison until the next Court date..
An offence is another word for a crime.
Convicted means a person has either admitted to an offence or been found guilty of an offence.
A conviction means an offence on a person’s record (after they have been convicted).
A sentence of imprisonment means a person must remain in prison for a certain period of time.
A community sentence means a judge has sentenced a person, as a penalty for their offending and to help them not re-offend, to either treatment programmes, unpaid work, have their movements electronically monitored and/or to report regularly to a probation officer nearest to where they live for a fixed period of time.
Being on probation means that a person is serving a sentence in the community or has been released early from prison and are finishing their sentence in the community.
Read more about types of sentences and orders .