Legal Translation of Court Documents in All Languages
Translation of court documents into the languages of non-English-speaking defendants plays an important role in federal criminal cases, and in the process of courtroom translation at large. It is common to provide every non-English speaking defendant with a translation of the Indictment.
In addition, the Local Rules of Criminal Practice of the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, for example, provide for translation of Change of Plea and Statement by Defendant in Advance of Plea of Guilty. D.C. Colo. LCrR 11.1 reads:
E. Translation of Change of Plea Documents. If a defendant requires an interpreter for a change of plea hearing:
1. defense counsel shall contact the deputy clerk designated as courtroom services specialist two weeks before the hearing to obtain the assistance of a designated interpreter in translating the plea agreement and the statement by defendant in advance of plea of guilty;
2. defense counsel shall coordinate with the designated interpreter to ensure that the plea agreement and the statement by defendant in advance of plea of guilty are translated, in writing, into the language of the defendant, furnished to defendant, and signed by defendant in advance of the hearing; and
3. a certificate that the written translation is a complete and correct interpretation shall be attached by the designated interpreter to the written translation of both the plea agreement and statement by defendant in advance of plea of guilty.
F. Documents Tendered to Courtroom Deputy. No later than the commencement of the change of plea hearing, the following documents shall be tendered to the courtroom deputy:
1. the original and a copy of both the plea agreement and statement in advance of plea of guilty; and
2. if applicable, the original and a copy of the written translation of both the plea agreement and statement in advance of plea of guilty.
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