Malice-aforethought meaning

The premeditated and deliberate commission of a criminal act with knowledge of its harmfulness or reckless indifference to its harmfulness and without justification or excuse.
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The requisite state of mind for murder to be charged under the common law, involving an intent to kill or to cause serious physical harm, depraved indifference to human life, or an intent to commit another serious felony that results in a death.
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(law) The criminal intent which precedes a crime, especially murder.
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Origin of malice-aforethought

  • Translating Anglo-Norman malice prepensé.

    From Wiktionary