to argue your position in some matter, especially as a lawyer on behalf of a client in a court of law or other tribunal
He pleaded a convincing case.
to ask for something that you want very much in an emotional way
The company is pleading with its creditors to save the company following their rejection of a rescue plan.
to make a particular argument (a reason or a point of law) as a defence or as an accusation (=a claim about someone that you say is true) in court
She pleaded insanity as a defence to the murder.