Suspect and accused are two terms that many times people tend to think that they are quiet the same. However, they both are different from each other.

When a crime is committed, usually there are two sides, the victim, who is affected because of the criminal act, and the suspect, who is said to have carried out the act. After a crime is committed, police will start investigations and if someone is arrested, this person is called a suspect. Basically, suspect is a person who is believed to be the one who committed a crime. And despite the suspicion, suspect must be treated as if they were not guilty.

When investigations are complete, the file is forwarded to the Prosecution Office, then the prosecutor charges the person. When a suspect is charged, then that person becomes an accused. So, the accused refers to a person who is charged with a crime. A person will be referred as an accused only if a case has been opened against the person. Defendant is also used as a synonym of accused.

After the trial, if the person is found guilty, then the accused becomes a convict.

If you need more information or need legal advice you can contact our English speaking criminal defense lawyers in Istanbul here.