Legal Maxim

Home » Nemo Punitur Pro Alino Delicto

Literal Meaning

No one is punished for the crime of another




This means to say that no person can be punished for any crime which has been done by some other person. He should be punished only for the crime he has done, not for the crime other has done. Therefore, this is one of the important principles which means that the person who has committed the crime will only be liable and hence would be given the punishment. This is not something that could be transferred to another person, like an asset or liability. Every person suffers from the crime he or she has committed.


A has committed trespass in B’s house. “C” a guard cannot be punished for trespass as he hasn’t committed any crime. No second person can be punished for the crime of another.

Case Laws

The District Collector vs Tmt.T.V.Kasturi on 21 February 2014

It is seen that marriage between the respondent/petitioner and one Chinnasamy, who is also employed in the Revenue Department as an Assistant was solemnized on 11.06.1985 without prior permission from the appellant/respondent, which resulted in the issuance of charge memo against the petitioner after a period of 22 years. Learned Single Judge, after considering the settled proposition of law and various aspects involved in the matter, decided to quash the charge memo on the sole ground of delay. The only question to be decided in the case on hand is as to whether issuance of charge memo after a lapse of 22 years is permissible in the absence of any specific assertion or denial by the appellant as to the application made by respondent/petitioner, seeking permission for marriage under the Conduct Rules. The answer is in negative, as there is no justification pleaded in keeping the application pending for so many years without taking any decision either way and therefore, it goes without saying that Nemo punitur pro alieno delicto (No one must be punished for the wrong of another).

This Maxim has been written and submitted by Ms. Aarushi Kapoor during her course of internship at B&B Associates LLP. Ms. Aarushi is a third-year law student at Hidayatullah National Law University, Naya Raipur, Chhattisgarh.

error: Content is protected !!