Nuremberg defense

(redirected from Nuremberg defence)
Also found in: Wikipedia.

Nuremberg defense

A plea or legal defense strategy in which the defendant claims that his or her actions were solely the result of carrying out the orders of superiors and that, as such, he or she should not be found guilty of such actions. Refers to the use of such a defense by political and military leaders of defeated Nazi Germany in the Nuremberg Trials of 1945–46. Against the charge of unlawful murder during wartime, the staff sergeant's defense attorney put forward a Nuremberg defense, claiming that the killings were carried out under direct orders by superior officers.
See also: defense
References in periodicals archive ?
SIR - Do you really think it is acceptable to allow John Lowles to cite the Nuremberg defence to justify his regiment killing civilians in Llanelli in 1911 ("'Llanelli troops were right to shoot'", Aug 20)?
Barry Dixon has adopted the Nuremberg defence and told the union and reporters that he is only obeying the orders of the fire authority councillors.
Dixon adopts the Nuremberg defence saying he was only obeying orders and Walker dives for cover when the heat is on.
IT'S doubtful whether the Rock Steady steward at the centre of the James McFadden row is aware of the Nuremberg defence.