New York Consolidated Laws, Criminal Procedure Law - CPL § 100.10 Local criminal court accusatory instruments;  definitions thereof

<[Eff. until Oct. 1, 2018 or Oct. 1, 2019, pursuant to L.2017, c. 59, pt. WWW, § 106(b).  See, also, section 100.10 eff. Oct. 1, 2018 or Oct. 1, 2019.] >

1. An “information” is a verified written accusation by a person, filed with a local criminal court, charging one or more other persons with the commission of one or more offenses, none of which is a felony.  It may serve as a basis both for the commencement of a criminal action and for the prosecution thereof in a local criminal court.

2. (a) A “simplified traffic information” is a written accusation by a police officer, or other public servant authorized by law to issue same, filed with a local criminal court, which charges a person with the commission of one or more traffic infractions and/or misdemeanors relating to traffic, and which, being in a brief or simplified form prescribed by the commissioner of motor vehicles, designates the offense or offenses charged but contains no factual allegations of an evidentiary nature supporting such charge or charges.  It serves as a basis for commencement of a criminal action for such traffic offenses, alternative to the charging thereof by a regular information, and, under circumstances prescribed in section 100.25 , it may serve, either in whole or in part, as a basis for prosecution of such charges.

(b) A “simplified parks information” is a written accusation by a police officer or other public servant authorized by law to issue same, filed with a local criminal court, which charges a person with the commission of one or more offenses, other than a felony, for which a uniform simplified parks information may be issued pursuant to the parks and recreation law and navigation law, and which being in a brief or simplified form prescribed by the commissioner of parks and recreation, designates the offense or offenses charged but contains no factual allegations of an evidentiary nature supporting such charge or charges.  It serves as a basis for commencement of a criminal action for such offenses, alternative to the charging thereof by a regular information, and, under circumstances parescribed   1 in section 100.25 it may serve, either in whole or in part, as a basis for prosecution of such charges.

(c) A “simplified environmental conservation information” is a written accusation by a police officer or other public servant authorized by law to issue same, filed with a local criminal court, which charges a person with the commission of one or more offenses, other than a felony, for which a uniform simplified environmental conservation information may be issued pursuant to the environmental conservation law, and which being in a brief or simplified form prescribed by the commissioner of environmental conservation, designates the offense or offenses charged but contains no factual allegations of an evidentiary nature supporting such charge or charges.  It serves as a basis for commencement of a criminal action for such offenses, alternative to the charging thereof by a regular information, and, under circumstances prescribed in section 100.25 , it may serve, either in whole or in part, as a basis for prosecution of such charges.

3. A “prosecutor's information” is a written accusation by a district attorney, filed with a local criminal court, either (a) at the direction of a grand jury pursuant to section 190.70 , or (b) at the direction of a local criminal court pursuant to section 180.50 or 180.70 , or (c) at the district attorney's own instance pursuant to subdivision two of section 100.50 , or (d) at the direction of a superior court pursuant to subdivision one-a of section 210.20 , charging one or more persons with the commission of one or more offenses, none of which is a felony.  It serves as a basis for the prosecution of a criminal action, but it commences a criminal action only where it results from a grand jury direction issued in a case not previously commenced in a local criminal court.

4. A “misdemeanor complaint” is a verified written accusation by a person, filed with a local criminal court, charging one or more other persons with the commission of one or more offenses, at least one of which is a misdemeanor and none of which is a felony.  It serves as a basis for the commencement of a criminal action, but it may serve as a basis for prosecution thereof only where a defendant has waived prosecution by information pursuant to subdivision three of section 170.65 .

5. A “felony complaint” is a verified written accusation by a person, filed with a local criminal court, charging one or more other persons with the commission of one or more felonies.  It serves as a basis for the commencement of a criminal action, but not as a basis for prosecution thereof.

1 So in original.  Probably should read “prescribed”.

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