Definition of “arrest” - English Dictionary

“arrest” in British English

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arrestverb [ T ]

uk /əˈrest/ us /əˈrest/

arrest verb [ T ] (CATCH)

B1 If the police arrest someone, they take them away to ask them about a crime that they might have committed:

He was arrested when customs officers found drugs in his bag.
The police arrested her for drinking and driving.

More examples

  • He put up a fight when the police tried to arrest him.
  • 23 people were arrested and large quantities of heroin were seized in a dawn raid.
  • Police arrested several of the demonstrators.
  • The burglars have been arrested but the jewellery is still missing.
  • A woman and two men were arrested on the day after the explosion.

arrestnoun [ C or U ]

uk /əˈrest/ us /əˈrest/

B2 the act of arresting someone:

Two arrests were made, but the men were later released without charge.
She was stopped outside the shop and placed/put under arrest.

More examples

  • The bomb attack was in retaliation for the recent arrest of two well-known terrorists.
  • His lawyer put him in the picture about what had happened since his arrest.
  • The US lodged a formal protest against the arrest of the foreign reporters.
  • After his arrest in 1998, he checked himself into rehab to get over his heroin addiction.
  • wrongful arrest

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

“arrest” in American English

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arrestverb [ T ]

us /əˈrest/

arrest verb [ T ] (CATCH)

(of the police) to use legal authority to catch and take someone to a place where the person may be accused of a crime:

Kansas City police arrested a bank robber.

arrest verb [ T ] (STOP)

to stop or slow an activity:

Antibiotics arrest the development of harmful bacteria.

arrestnoun [ C/U ]

us /əˈrest/

arrest noun [ C/U ] (CATCH)

the act of using legal authority to catch and take someone to a place where the person may be accused of a crime:

[ C ] FBI agents made the arrest.
[ U ] He was placed under arrest by federal marshals.

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