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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

1.2-15 When defendant has an interpreter

New, May 10, 2012

The defendant in this case is not sufficiently fluent in the English language for trial purposes.  (He/She) has a constitutional right to a court certified interpreter.  This is because a defendant who lacks an understanding of the legal proceedings surrounding (his/her) case cannot assist in the defense, challenge the accusers, and make informed choices regarding (his/her) fundamental rights.  It is through the use of qualified interpreters that defendants who cannot fully understand English are afforded the same fair treatment and opportunities in their defense as English speaking defendants.

Commentary

The federal due process clause requires continuous translations at trial when a non-English speaking defendant cannot understand or appreciate the proceedings.  State v. Munoz, 233 Conn. 106, 132 (1995).


 

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