Hardly proof beyond a reasonable doubt

minhduc

Senior Member
vietnamese
Hello eveyone

This is an extract feom Rain Fall by Barry Eisler.

On the other hand, I didn't like the idea of his getting any closer to the true nature of my work. Tatsu's name on that report, for example. I had to assume that Harry would follow it like a link on the Internet, that he would tap into Tatsu's conspiracy theories, that he would sense a connection with me. Hardly proof beyond a reasonable doubt, of course, but between them Harry and Tatsu would have a significant number of puzzle pieces.

I would like to know what does "Hardly proof beyond a reasonable doubt" mean. Could you help me please? Thanks.
 
  • morzh

    Banned
    USA
    Russian
    By itself it means "it is not a 100% proven thing". Comes from legal language, criminal cases area. In a criminal court the guilt should be proven beyond the reasonable doubt. That is 100% of the jurors have to agree that each one of them is convinced 100% that the accused person committed the crime (as opposite to civil suits where everything is proven by preponderance of the evidence).
     

    PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    In a criminal trial, the jury must be satisfied that there is "proof beyond a reasonable doubt" that the defendant did the crime, otherwise, they cannot say he is guilty. i.e. There must be evidence to show clearly that the defendant did the crime.

    If someone says, "Hardly proof beyond a reasonable doubt" = that does not prove anything.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    In American (USA) jurisprudence some one on trial does not need to have his guilt proven absolutely; it needs to have his guilt "proven beyond reasonable doubt". This is a fixed phrase in American law. This applies to criminal law only. Civil law has other standards of proof.

    The writer is borrowing that to show that it was not enough evidence to convict in a court of law, but was enough evidence to make him think he was on the right path.
     

    Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    The writer is borrowing that to show that it was not enough evidence to convict in a court of law, but was enough evidence to make him think he was on the right path.
    It looks to me like the narrator in the excerpt is afraid that "Harry and Tatsu"will reach a conclusion about the narrator.

    I don't know the rest of the situation, but it looks like one in which Harry and Tatsu could act on their conclusion, against the narrator, even though they do not have "proof beyond a reasonable doubt." They couldn't convict the narrator of a crime and put him in prison with the evidence they have, but since they are not an American court of law, they don't have to meet that standard: they just have to have a suspicion about the narrator to start acting against him. Maybe they will try to kill him.
     

    Thomas Veil

    Senior Member
    English - USA
    This is essentially a double negative: "it is not proof such that doubt would not be reasonable". Or, in other words, "it is proof such that doubt would be reasonable". It's enough evidence that people might start to figure things out, but not so much that people could still doubt.

    If someone says, "Hardly proof beyond a reasonable doubt" = that does not prove anything.
    Not quite.
     
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