Who is the biggest criminal to be declared innocent in the court of law.

Ok OJ Simpson is obvious to most. Who else?

They don’t declare people innocent in a court of law 'round here. Which leaves us with “not declared guilty in a court of law,” which most crooks aren’t. Whoever the biggest crook is, odds are that’s also the one who’s the guiltiest never to be declared guilty.

Chris Lister was 7’3", but he was declared guilty.

Yeah, exactly.

The first people at the top of any list would be national rulers. Pol Pt, Idi Amin, Pinochet, The Generals ruling Thaliland. These people are all resposnible for literally thousands of murders, extortion, drug and arms trafficking, torture, rape, slavery and war crimes amongst many less serious offences. None of them ever have been charged and it’s highly unlikely that they ever will be.

At the less formal level, we have the various crimelords of nations such as Colombia or Somalia. Once again, guilty for dozens of murders, extortion, kidnap, rape, slavery and so forth. None of them are likely to be brought to trial.

Just on the US domestic front, how many Mafia dons ever been convicted? How many major drug barons? Even lower echelon criminals such as serial hitmen or loansharks are very rarely convicted.

Like the man said, think of the biggest criminal you can. That’s the biggest criminal who has never been convicted.

OJ killed two people. He would not even make it onto a list of the top 1, 000 American criminals with spotless records.

One could, I suppose, modify the question to:

“Who is the individual who was found not guilty after a trial in a US court of law of the most heinous crimes, and yet is generally seen by the public to have in fact been guilty?”

Any nominations for this?

Which of them have been tried in a “court of law”? As stated in the OP.

Can we quit nitpicking for once? It’s obvious that the OP meant found not guilty, as even his example was not declared innocent, merely not guilty.

fatty arbuckle

Roy Bryant and J.W. Milam

(This is hardly a debate.)

While not a mass murderer this guys crime was pretty horrific and over the top for him to have gotten away with it.

Robert Durst

Well, John Gotti ws long known as the Teflon Don, because he was acquitted several times of murder and racketeering.

He finally got convicted, of course.

While not the biggest criminals, certainly you could say that the Emmett Till case was one of the most obvious cases of the guilty (the accused even confessed to Look magazine right after the trial!) who got away with it.

Seems like Clinton dodged a bullet during his trial in the US Senate . . .

Lizzie Borden

Clinton was not charged with or tried for any crime. Impeachment is not a legal proceding.

Not a “big” criminal, but a gruesome one: Mel Ignatow was acquitted by a jury for the torture, rape and murder of his fiancee. After the trial, film was found that contained photographs of Ignatow committing the crimes.


Pinochet, of course.

Pinochet was guilty of literal mass murder, the assassination of hundreds of individuals, the torture, rape, mutilation and death of thousands, he ran a major drug production and smuggling operation, was a notorious arms dealer and he kept tens of millions of people in a state of perpetual terror and poverty.

If you can think of a bigger bastard who was never convicted, then please let me know.

These criminals who only killed one or two people just are not in the running. Even Gotti is a joke compared to Pinochet.

Instead of linking to a long article, could you just quote the part where it says he was found not guilty in a court of law of all the crimes you just mentioned?

I don’t mind the nitpicking as an aside, but nitpicking and then deliberately changing the question completely from what you knew it was asking is annoying.

Alfred Jodl, who surrendered the German army to Allies at the end of World War 2, was found guilty at the Nuremberg Trials, but later acquitted by a German review panel. However, the German review panel’s findings weren’t binding on the Nuremberg verdict, and it didn’t much matter to Jodl, since he had already been hanged.

Idi Amin?

Pinochet’s a special case anyway: part of the deal for him giving up power was an amnesty.