aid and abet


aid and abet


  • to help someone, typically in an illegal or mischievous activity.
  • to incite a person to do something possibly wrong.
  • encourage someone or something.
  • facilitate and promote a crime’s commission.

Example Sentences

  1. The police officers arrested Gary for aiding and abetting the car thief.
  2. I’m sure other children aided and abetted James in stealing items from our home. He’s just the only kid who was caught.
  3. You aided and abetted the robber by driving the getaway car.
  4. The teachers scolded John because he aided and abetted the fighting boys.
  5. His wife received a 7-year jail sentence for aiding and abetting him in his criminal activities.
  6. The prefect was punished for aiding and abetting the stealing of exams.
  7. The referee aided and abetted the team so it could win.
  8. You have aided and abetted the crime if you don’t take legal action when you see bribery.
  9. John thought he was helping the strangers until he was told he had aided and abetted them to escape from the police.
  10. The suspects who aided and abetted the selling of illegal drugs refused to reveal the main criminal.
  11. The invigilator aided and abetted cheating in the exam room.


People often use the idiom “aid and abet” in legal contexts. Aid is another word for help, while abet is derived from an old French word that means encouraging a hound to bite. The verbs are old. “Abet” dates from around 1300, while “aid” dates from about 1400. Although people initially used the phrase to refer to criminal activities, it gradually crept into more general speech. Abet was the term people used to describe dogs attacking trapped bears. The phrase traces its origins to the 1700s but was not used to mean attack or bite. In 1798, George Washington used the phrase in a letter initially published in Writings in 1893.

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