For a client who did not commit the alleged crime, the limitations of a ‘not guilty’ verdict may be deeply unsatisfying.

Firstly, a finding of 'not guilty' is not a determination of factual innocence. A 'not guilty' verdict only means that the Crown has not proven the specific allegation beyond a reasonable doubt based upon the admissible evidence tendered at the trial.

Secondly, a finding of 'not guilty' does not mean that the state will reimburse the client for his legal expenses in defending the unproven allegation, nor compensate the client for any restrictions upon his liberty in advance of his trial.

Furthermore, a finding of 'not guilty' will do nothing to erase the stain of the allegation in the minds of many observers of the criminal justice process.

In the criminal justice process the initial elation of a finding of 'not guilty' for a factually innocent client often carries with it a bitter aftertaste.

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