go scot-free

(redirected from went scot free)

go scot-free

To escape punishment for a crime or wrongdoing; to be acquitted of charges for a crime. Mark's wealthy senator uncle influenced the jury, and he ended up going scot-free. My younger sister caused endless trouble as a child, but because she was the baby of the house, she usually went scot-free.

go scot-free

 and get off scot-free
to go unpunished; to be acquitted of a crime. (This scot is an old word meaning "tax" or "tax burden.") The thief went scot-free. Jane cheated on the test and got caught, but she got off scot-free.

get off/go ˌscot-ˈfree

(informal) escape from a situation without receiving the punishment you deserve: It seemed so unfair that she was punished while the others got off scot-free!This idiom comes from the old English word sceot, meaning a ‘tax’. People were scot-free if they didn’t have to pay the tax.
See also: get, off
References in periodicals archive ?
As a result, investigation was not impartial and fair and the criminals went scot free.
The accused went scot free because the girls' parents and villagers thought pursuing the case would bring disrepute to the family.
He said that the assailants of the Baloch masses would never be brought to justice, adding that the assailants of Nawab Akbar Bugti and Nawab Nauroz Khan went scot free.
If the trial were about looking for justice for African victims, the leaders of Uganda and Rwanda, and the "white" Africans who went scot free in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Namibia, and the leaders of Renamo in Mozambique and Unita in Angola (again supported, funded and armed by America and its friends) would be in The Hague by now.
MIAMI -- Fifteen years ago, killers of Latin American journalists almost always went scot free - but that was before the Inter American Press Association (IAPA) began campaigning for justice.
What is really worrying is that last month three white South Africans went scot free after being accused of murdering their three black workers, who were found stuffed in laundry machines