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Military Pretrial Agreement

After the judge accepts the plea as being given on a precautionary basis, the prison administration (the military judge or the military body) will proceed to the conviction without knowledge of the limitation of the sentence accepted by the summons. This means that you get the benefit of the sentence that is less – either the one that is included in the PTA or the one that was announced in court. PTAs can be initiated by the accused with the help of a lawyer or by the government. Defence counsel assists the accused in his trial and his decision on a PEZ. A military judge also has an affirmative obligation to ensure that a PEZ does not unduly limit the rights of the accused. The entire EPZ must be signed in writing and by the accused, the defence counsel and the summons authority. The PTA must not include informal commitments or oral presentations. The accused may withdraw from the EPZ at any time prior to sentencing. The convening authority may at any time withdraw from the means of reflection on the commitments contained in the PTA before the accused delivers significant results.

A preliminary agreement (ZEP) is an agreement between the summons authority and an accused. A typical EPZ includes the accused`s promises to plead guilty in exchange for the consent of the summons authority to limit the sentence handed down in court. During a guilty verdict, a military judge will review the agreement and ensure that the accused understands. Pre-Procedure Agreements (EPAs). A prior agreement is a formal written agreement between the accused and the Court-Martial Convening Authority. It is commonly referred to as “ZEP.” This is usually an admission of guilt by the accused in exchange for a restriction of the sentence. In other words, the accused agrees to plead guilty to some or all of the charges and specifications, and the appelnement authority agrees not to approve a judgment that goes beyond a certain maximum. During the hearing, the military judge will conduct a full review of the specific conditions of the Agreement to ensure that the accused fully understands the importance and effectiveness of any provision of the Agreement; Voluntary inclusion in the agreement; and have not received oral commitments on the agreement. This investigation is in addition to the preliminary inquiry of the judges into the validity of the guilty plea itself without the authorization of the accused. The provisions relating to pre-trial agreements are contained in the rules applicable to the courts (R.C.M.) 705 and 910, supplemented by case law and service rules.

Although a Solder has the right to plead not guilty and require a court martial or judge alone to determine guilt or innocence, most of them decide to plead guilty. A soldier will plead guilty primarily because he has entered into a pre-procedure agreement. If you decide to propose a PEZ, your defence lawyer will have to submit a written offer. All conditions and promises must be written down. The convening authority may accept or reject an offer you have made or propose separate terms and conditions on the counter-offer. If the convening authority has accepted the PTA, the EPZ will be signed by the convening authority and will be returned to you. Preliminary hearings may be opened by the accused, defence counsel, judicial counsel, staff judge`s lawyer, summons authority or their duly authorized representatives. Either the defence or the government can propose a condition or condition to the EPZ that is not prohibited by law or public order. If you are considering entering a EPZ, it is very important that you have an effective lawyer in the PTA process.


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