What is this episode about?
Learn how to talk about crime and criminals in English, the police investigation and trial and punishment in Talking about Crime, a new episode from English Plus Podcast.
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I am using an automatic transcript service as it is not possible for me to do it on my own and I cannot afford human transcription at the moment. The service claims to have about 95% accuracy, which means there will still be some mistakes, so my apologies for having a less than perfect transcript, but I hope I can afford human transcription soon and I will solve this problem. However, the service is pretty good, and the transcript is almost perfect.
Welcome to a new episode from English plus podcast. Today, we will talk about crimes. How can we talk about crimes? We will talk about crimes and criminals. We will learn how to talk about investigating crime, trial and punishment, and people connected with crime and the legal process. So without further ado, Let’s start our episode with talking about crimes and criminals.
[00:00:32] So we will talk about common crimes. I’m not saying which are the best or the worst. All crimes are crimes and old crimes are bad, but how can we describe crime? And what are the words that we can use to talk about crime? Let’s start with perhaps the most gruesome crime of all. And that is to kill someone.
[00:00:54] Now, what is the name of the crime? What do we call the crime of killing someone? Well, this is called murder. The crime is murder. The criminal is called a murderer and the verb is to murder. So murder can be called the crime and can be the verb as well. So that was our first crime for today and perhaps the worst crime, but there are other crimes that might not be as serious as murder, but they’re crimes.
[00:01:21] Nonetheless, what do we call the crime? When someone steals something from a shop? Well, if someone steal something from a shop. He or she commits a crime and the crime is called shoplifting. The person or the criminal is called a shoplifter and the verb is to shop lift. So that was shoplifting. What do we call the crime of stealing something from someone’s home?
[00:01:44] Well, we call that burglary. The criminal is called a burglar and the verb is Burgo. What do we call the crime of taking something illegally into another country? We call this crime smuggling. And he, we’re not just talking about drugs or guns, it can be anything else. The thing is that these things are illegal, bringing them into the country in a legal way.
[00:02:08] Now, of course, when we talk about drugs, drugs are illegal in almost everywhere around the world. So anytime you try to bring drugs into a country that will be smuggling. But sometimes smuggling can be for other things that might not sound illegal to you like cell phones or gold or, or something else.
[00:02:26] But when you bring them into the country illegally, it is called smuggling. The person or the criminal is called a smuggler and the verb is to smuggle. Now, what do we call the crime of taking a person hostage in exchange for money or other favors? Let’s say. We call that kidnapping the person or the criminal is called kidnapper.
[00:02:47] And the verb is to kidnap. And then we have the crime of doing violent action for political purposes, which sometimes includes killing innocent people for political purposes. And in these cases, no matter what the cause is, it is wrong because innocent people get killed because of whatever purpose you have.
[00:03:08] We’re definitely not talking about peaceful solutions. We’re talking about violent action. This is called terrorism and terrorism. Maybe that is the one that is even worse than that murder, because it can go beyond murder into mass murder, killing a lot of people at the same time and specially not targets, not real targets.
[00:03:28] You’re talking about killing a lot of innocent people just to prove a point or for some stupid cause whatever that cause may be. Well, terrorism is the crime. The criminal is called a terrorist and the verb here is terrorized. But let me tell you that terrorize is mainly used in a general way, meaning to make others very frightened rather than just relating to the crime.
[00:03:50] So terrorize is not. Quite related to terrorism. When you use the verb terrorized doesn’t always mean terrorism. We can use that, as I said, in a general way, meaning to make others very frightened. And now two more crimes. What about the crime of deceiving people in order to take money from them? That is called fraud and the person or the criminal is called fraudster and the verb is defraud.
[00:04:15] So that might be a little bit different from the others. Now, for the other crimes, you might have easily predicted the criminals name and the verbs name, but here it’s a little bit different fraudster for the person who commits fraud and the fraud is the verb. And finally, what about taking someone, especially a child, usually in order to harm them?
[00:04:35] That is a little bit different from kidnapping, which might mean the same thing in general. But when you kidnap a person, usually it’s an exchange for money, which is called a ransom or other favors. But when you take someone especially a child, usually in order to harm them, that is called abduction. The criminal is called abductor and the verb is abducted.
[00:04:57] So these were the crimes. We talked about murder, shoplifting, burglary, smuggling, kidnapping, terrorism, fraud, and finally abduction. Now we will move on to talk about investigating crime, but before we do that, let me remind you that you can find exercises you can use to practice the things we’re learning.
[00:05:15] In this episode, on our website, English plus podcast.com. You can find the link to the custom posts we created for this episode, you will find everything you need there from interactive activities, the PDF downloadable worksheet. And of course the transcript of this episode, all in this custom posts that you can find the link to in the description.
[00:05:32] So take the link and take your English with it to the next level. And one more thing. If you like the content we’re creating and you would like to support us to create more of this content and reach more people, there is another link that will take you to our Patreon page, go to Patreon, become our patron and help us reach more people and create more content.
[00:05:51] And now let’s get back to talking about crime and let’s talk about investigating crime. Now, as an example, I will say that Ross is a man who committed a crime. He robbed a bank. And while we were talking about Ross and the process of investigation, we will learn some key words we can use when we want to describe investigating crime.
[00:06:12] So Ross committed a crime when he robbed a bank. Now let me stop here. Committed a crime. Now, this is the verb we use with crime. Of course you can say, do a crime, but we usually use commit a crime. So Ross committed a crime. When he robbed a bank, someone witnessed the crime and told the police, someone saw what happened and told the police.
[00:06:35] And here, instead of just saying someone saw what happened, we say someone witnessed the crime and told the police. Now, because this person witnessed the crime, he told the police that Ross committed the crime and he robbed the bank. The police arrested Ross and charged them with bank robbery. Now the police arrested him.
[00:06:56] That means they took him to the police station and they detained him. They arrested him. That’s the word? And they charged him with bank robbery. Now when you charge a person with a crime, that means you assume that this person does this crime. Maybe you have proof. Maybe, you know, this person is the criminal, but you still have to charge the person with this crime because it’s not your job to sentence people to say whether this person is guilty or innocent.
[00:07:26] That’s the job of the court, the court of law, which we will talk about later in this episode. So here are the police arrested draws and charged him with bank robbery. They also accused his twin brother, Ben of being his accomplice. Now, if you accuse someone of doing something wrong or dishonest, you say or tell them that you believe that they did it still, no proof, it’s just an accusation.
[00:07:52] They accused his twin brother, Ben of being his accomplishment. And by the way, we’re not talking about Ben, who we usually have in our episodes. That’s definitely a different Ben Ben isn’t isn’t. But here in our story, they accused his twin brother, Ben of being his accomplice. When we say accomplice, that means someone who helps someone commit a crime, maybe not the main person who committed the crime, but if you help in any way, you can be considered as an accomplice.
[00:08:21] So after that the police investigated the case and collected evidence at the crime scene. Now to investigate the case, what is the case? The case is a crime that is being investigated. You search for clues for proof, for evidence. What is the evidence? That’s the information used in a court of law to decide whether the accused is guilty or not.
[00:08:44] And that’s the job of the police. The police accused people. They charge people with crimes. They investigate the case. They collect evidence because that evidence will be presented in a court of law. And then it’s the job of the court of law to decide whether the accused is guilty or not. I now let’s continue.
[00:09:04] They found Ross’s fingerprints and they also found DNA evidence. Now the DNA evidence is the evidence from hair or skin that can be analyzed scientifically and be shown to come from a particular person. So they found DNA evidence, and usually that’s hard evidence. That’s very strong evidence. They found fingerprints and DNA evidence that linked him to the crime.
[00:09:28] So they were confident. They had proof that the two men were guilty. And here, when we talk about proof, we’re talking about evidence that shows conclusively, whether something is a fact or not. And usually the police wait until they have all the evidence and the proof they need before they go to the court of law.
[00:09:50] Because if they go to the court of law without having enough evidence, the case will be dropped and the accused person will be acquitted or declared innocent. So the police makes sure to collect enough evidence before they accuse the person and send him to the court of law. So now we talked about the part of the police, the crime investigation.
[00:10:10] What about trial and punishment? Now the case comes to court. So what happens. The case came to court. And he, when we talk about court, we’re talking about the place where a judge makes legal decisions. That is the court. So the case came to court and Ross and Ben were tried when we say a person or in this case, two people were tried.
[00:10:31] That means they were put through a legal process to decide whether they committed the crime or not. It doesn’t matter what, you know, it matters what you can prove in court. Maybe you’ve heard that in movies or in series, but that is the reality because it doesn’t matter if the police know that this person is the real criminal, they have to prove it.
[00:10:52] They were tried and here, as we said, that is the legal process, the trial, which is the legal process in court, whereby an accused person is investigated and tried. That is we call it the trial. The trial did not last very long Ross and Ben both pleaded not guilty in court. When we say plead not guilty, you can plead guilty or plead not guilty when you plead not guilty.
[00:11:15] They said they did not commit the crime. When you plead guilty. And here we’re talking about the defendants or the accused people, they say that they committed the crime here. They pleaded not guilty in court. Their lawyer did her best to defend them. But the prosecuting lawyer produced a very strong case against them.
[00:11:33] And here, of course, you have a lawyer to defend you and you have the prosecuting lawyer who tries to prove to the court that you are guilty. I’m pretty sure you’ve seen that in a lot of movies and series, but the more important thing is what we call them. We call the person who defends you, your lawyer, but the person who tries to prove you’re guilty is called the prosecuting lawyer.
[00:11:54] After brief deliberations, the jury passed verdict on them. Now here, the verdict is the decision, whether they’re guilty or not guilty deliberations. And here we’re talking about the jury specifically, the deliberations are simply the discussions, but we call them deliberations in this context of a court of law.
[00:12:12] And of course, we’re talking about the jury here. So the jury passed the verdict. They decided, they decided that Ross was guilty and he was convicted of robbery, but Ben was innocent. So here he was convicted. Ross was convicted and here that means he was found to be guilty of a crime. He was convicted of robbery, but Ben was innocent, innocent, not guilty of a crime, just the opposite.
[00:12:37] So the judge acquitted Ben of any involvement in the robbery, the judge announced or said that Ben was innocent. That is the meaning of acquitted Ben of any involvement in the robbery, but sentenced straws to three years in prison or in jail. Both work sentence straws. That is the legal decision that only a judge can pass.
[00:12:58] And as well as a prison sentence, Ross also had to pay a large, fine, a large fine. That is the money you have to pay when you do something wrong. Ross served two years in prison, but was released from prison a year early. He got time off for good behavior. Now, sometimes people go to prison for 10 years or 15 years, but they are released early.
[00:13:21] They are released early, especially for good behavior. Obviously Ross behaved in a good way when he was in prison. So he was released a year early. He got time off his sentence for good behavior. So here we talked about the case of court, the trial, they pleaded not guilty. The lawyer defended them. The prosecuting lawyer tried to prove they were guilty after deliberations.
[00:13:46] Ross was found guilty, but his brother was found innocent and he was acquitted. And then Ross was sentenced to three years in prison and he also had to pay a large fine, but he served two years only. And he was released a year early because he got time off for good behavior. So that was how you can describe trial and punishment.
[00:14:07] And that is to compliment our discussion for today or our talking point for today. And that is talking about crime because talking about crime is not complete. If you don’t talk about the first part, which is the crime itself. And the criminals and of course the verbs we can use. And then we need to talk about the police investigation.
[00:14:25] And finally, of course, we need to talk about trial and punishment. And now to conclude our episode, let’s talk about the people connected with crime and the legal process. Now the first word is offender. What do we mean by the offender? Offender is someone who commits an illegal act or an offense. And that’s why we call this person an offender.
[00:14:45] And then we have the judge. The judge is the person who leads a trial and decides on the sentence. That means the punishment. When someone is found guilty, then we have the jury. The jury is a group of citizens. Now there are 12 in the UK and usually in the U S as well, who decide on the verdict, but the jury do not decide on the sentence.
[00:15:05] They do not say that this person should go to prison for three years or 10 years or five years or whatever, or even decide on fines, et cetera. That is the job of the judge, the jury. They have only one job. They decide on the verdict, whether the accused person is guilty. Or not, that’s all what they do.
[00:15:23] They hear the lawyer, they hear the prosecuting lawyer, they hear all the witnesses and everything. And then they decide whether the accused person is guilty or not only when the accused person is found guilty. Does the judge decide on the sentence? And then we talked about the offender, the judge, the jury.
[00:15:41] What about the person who suffers as a result of a crime that is the victim? The victim is the person who suffers as the result of a crime. And then we have other people. Yes, we have the offender. We know that this person committed a crime, but what about that? A person who is suspected of committing an offense, you’re not sure yet.
[00:16:00] You only suspect this person. We call this person a suspect. And then we have a person who sees a crime being committed and usually is called to court. To talk about this in front of the judge and the jury, that person is called a witness. So we have offender, judge, jury, victim, suspect, and witness. These are people connected with crime and the legal process.
[00:16:24] And with that, we will conclude our episode for today. And our topic for today was talking about crime and the different words we can use and the different phrases and contexts, we can use these words in. To talk about crime, to talk about police investigation, to talk about trial and the people connected with crime and the legal process.
[00:16:44] I hope you liked the episode and I hope you learn something new in this episode. And remember you can practice this things you’ve learned in this episode. If you take the link, you can find in the description that will take you to our website, English plus podcast.com. With that being said, this is your host, Danny.
[00:16:59] I would like to thank you very much for listening to another episode from English plus podcasts. I will see you next time.