of citizens (called jurors) selected at random
and given power
to decide the facts of a legal
case submitted to them, and to return
. Whereas the judge
decides on points of law and sums up the evidence
presented by both the prosecution
and defense, the jurors must decide on the facts before them and must acquit
if his or her guilt is not proven 'beyond a reasonable doubt
.' They are the sole judges of the credibility of the witnesses and their duties are as important as those of the judge. In some case the unanimous verdict is required
, whereas in the others a majority
verdict is acceptable.
If the jury cannot reach a decision
, they are discharged and a new trial
(with a new selection
of jurors) is ordered by the judge.