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The withdrawal of a sentence or punishment by the sovereign, on advice of the Home Secretary, under the prerogative of mercy. Once a pardon is granted, the accused cannot be tried and if he has already been convicted, he cannot be punished. The responsibility is upon him, however, to plead the pardon as a bar to prosecution or punishment; if he does not do so as soon as possible, he may be held to have waived it. A person may also be granted a reprieve, i.e. the temporary suspension of a punishment (for example, if he becomes insane after sentence is passed).

Subjects: Law.

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