Definition of illegal in English:

illegal

adjective

  • Contrary to or forbidden by law, especially criminal law.

    ‘illegal drugs’
    • ‘The report also raises concerns over the efforts to tackle illegal drug use in prison.’
    • ‘I have also seen loads of illegal dumping and it's vandalism of a natural amenity.’
    • ‘When we looked into it a number of computers were generating lots of illegal traffic.’
    • ‘No Court will lend its aid to a man who founds his cause of action upon an immoral or an illegal act.’
    • ‘They need to be believe that illegal activity is going on in premises before searching them.’
    • ‘Many illegal drugs have to be imported into this country from different parts of the world.’
    • ‘We offer advice on the procedures to get court orders to remove illegal encampments.’
    • ‘The line between vigorous price competition and illegal predation may be a fine one.’
    • ‘English law makes illegal a contract to indemnify a person in respect of liability for fraud.’
    • ‘Anyone found with illegal substances in their bloodstream will face prosecution.’
    • ‘Taking any other type of drug is also an illegal activity so surely one can lead to the other.’
    • ‘If it cannot protect them from drugs then it should protect them from illegal drugs and gangsters.’
    • ‘Further the use of cluster bombs as indiscriminate weapons is also illegal it is contended.’
    • ‘He was sentenced to four years for illegal possession of the firearm with intent to endanger life.’
    • ‘Swindon Council has had to take action against illegal camps in the town in the past.’
    • ‘It is one of the biggest cases of Internet piracy and illegal copying ever discovered.’
    • ‘He was charged with possession of illegal substances and a public order offence.’
    • ‘The use of this illegal extension currently involves a form of religious gathering.’
    • ‘He thinks it will be difficult to prove it is his voice on the bootleg, illegal version.’
    • ‘So it was cruel of York police to choose this week to announce a major crackdown on illegal driving.’
    unlawful, illicit, illegitimate, against the law, criminal, lawbreaking, actionable, felonious
    foul, against the rules
    View synonyms

noun

North American
derogatory
  • A person present in a country without official authorization.

    • ‘Irish immigration centres estimate 10,000 Irish are among 14 million illegals in the US.’
    • ‘By talking tough on illegals, politicians have been able to defend high levels of legal immigration.’
    • ‘Letting the states bill the Feds for the costs associated with illegals would hit the politicians in the wallet.’
    • ‘Sales tax, maybe, but most illegals are going to be paid under the table in cash, with the IRS not seeing the details.’
    • ‘Even politicians who thunder about illegals have trouble sticking to their convictions.’
    • ‘The president has expressed his support for amnesty on some occasions for illegals, much to the chagrin of many in the party.’
    • ‘Immigration officials say those illegals come from more than 100 countries.’
    • ‘Others may not wish to increase legal immigration without first cutting back on the illegals.’
    • ‘That way you can't tell by looking at the books how many illegals are getting organs - or even that it's going on at all.’
    • ‘The large number of births to illegals shows that the longer illegal immigration is allowed to persist, the harder the problem is to solve.’
    • ‘Instead, for whatever reason, the Democrats want to have illegals here to use as political pawns.’
    • ‘Another gain for illegals is the campaign to allow them to attend state universities at the in-state resident rate.’
    • ‘Have a telephone tip line to report illegals to Immigration.’
    • ‘It's really about illegal immigration and how to make illegals legal.’
    • ‘People who insist that all illegals be deported have an excellent point, and I think they're right.’
    • ‘I've got another one $1 that a poll would reveal that most Americans would like all illegals deported.’
    • ‘But whether illegals are the sort of immigrants he really wants to attract is another matter.’
    • ‘No wonder Tyson and so many other companies like them are hiring so many illegals and claiming that no Americans want these jobs.’
    • ‘These poor illegals, mostly of them are Mexican, and they are not coming into this country to do anything other than find a job.’
    • ‘Before the election a figure for the number of illegals was politically embarrassing because it showed that the government had lost control of our borders.’

Origin

Early 17th century: from French illégal or medieval Latin illegalis, from Latin in- ‘not’ + legalis ‘according to the law’.

Pronunciation

illegal

/i(l)ˈlēɡəl//ɪ(l)ˈliɡəl/