Encyclopedia > Right against self-incrimination

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Right against self-incrimination

The right against self-incrimination is a legal right found in many legal systems in which an individual cannot be coerced into making a confession. The right is intended as a mechanism to prevent torture. In the United States the right is placed in the Fifth Amendment to the constitution. In countries with civil law such as France, a defendant can and is compelled to testify in his court case, but cannot be placed under oath and punished if he or she lies.

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