Meaning of “conviction” in the English Dictionary

"conviction" in British English

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uk /kənˈvɪk.ʃən/ us /kənˈvɪk.ʃən/

conviction noun (CRIME)

C2 [ C or U ] the fact of officially being found to be guilty of a particular crime, or the act of officially finding someone guilty:

Since it was her first conviction for stealing, she was given a less severe sentence.
He has a long record of previous convictions for similar offences.
The conviction of the three demonstrators has caused public outrage locally.

More examples

  • Fresh evidence has emerged that casts doubts on the men's conviction.
  • He got off with a fairly light sentence because it was his first conviction.
  • The district attorney said if McVeigh is given the death penalty and his conviction is upheld on appeal, the state prosecution would become moot.
  • Because of a previous conviction, the judge refused to grant bail .
  • His conviction was quashed in March 1986 after his counsel argued that the police evidence was a tissue of lies.

conviction noun (OPINION)

C2 [ C or U ] a strong opinion or belief:

religious/moral convictions
a deep/strong/lifelong conviction
[ + that ] It's my personal conviction that all rapists should be locked away for life.

[ U ] a feeling of being certain about something:

He said he was enjoying his new job, but his voice lacked conviction.

More examples

  • She had a firm conviction that they would meet again in the hereafter.
  • His speech carried so much conviction that I had to agree with him.
  • He has an irrational conviction that he is right.
  • Her statement that she supported the president lacked conviction.

(Definition of “conviction” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"conviction" in American English

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convictionnoun [ C/U ]

us /kənˈvɪk·ʃən/

conviction noun [ C/U ] (BELIEF)

a strong belief that is not likely to change, or the strong feeling that your beliefs are right:

[ C ] He has no ability to communicate his convictions.
[ U ] His followers believed with varying degrees of conviction.

conviction noun [ C/U ] (CRIME)

the act of deciding officially in a court of law that someone is guilty of a particular crime:

[ C ] His criminal record includes convictions for robberies in several states.

(Definition of “conviction” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"conviction" in Business English

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uk /kənˈvɪkʃən/ us LAW

[ C ] a decision made by a court of law that someone is guilty of a crime:

have a conviction for sth He has two previous convictions for tax evasion.

[ U ] the process of proving in a court of law that someone is guilty of a crime:

Too many defendants are escaping conviction because the case against them was poorly presented.

(Definition of “conviction” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)