Criminal conspiracy charges cover a wide range of conduct, ranging from possession of drugs to the commission of murder. In general, conspiracy means that you and at least one other person agreed to commit a criminal offense with one of you doing something specific to further the conspiracy. The agreement between the accused parties does not need to be written, emailed or texted. Even if you and another person (or group) just discussed the offense, you may face charges and may be convicted, irrespective of whether you and your group carried out the criminal act or not. Furthermore, the parties do not even need to meet. Sometimes co-conspirators don’t even know about each other – a scenario that can happen in large cases involving a central figure or a large underground criminal organization, such as a gang or drug cartel.
Federal Laws Regarding Criminal Conspiracy
It’s a crime to conspire to defraud the United States or to violate any other federal laws, such as laws prohibiting the sale and distribution of controlled substances, robbery, assault, battery, murder and other criminal acts.
Strategies for Mounting an Effective Defense Against Conspiracy Charges
Do not automatically waive your Federal Detention or Probably Cause hearings. Approached strategically, these hearings give you an opportunity to lay the groundwork for rebutting the government’s case later. Demonstrate that the government lacks evidence to convict you. Showing that you had been associated with someone (such as a drug dealer or a suspect wanted for burglary) is not the same thing as demonstrating that you had a relationship with that person to commit a crime. Understand what type of conspiracy charge has been leveled, so that you can prepare your defense accordingly. The hub-and-spoke model, for instance, involves one person (or a tight inner circle) organizing an enterprise. Another more decentralized model involves a chain of people removed potentially by several degrees of separation. The nature of the alleged conspiracy will help dictate your defense strategy and options. When combating conspiracy charges, seek a seasoned attorney. Ideally, this person should have as many of the following qualifications as possible:
- A solid grasp of federal laws and experience in litigation and conspiracy charges
- Board-Certification in criminal defense
- Recognized and respected in the legal community for his or her knowledge and understanding of the law
- A strong negotiator who knows when to work out a plea agreement and when to take a case to trial and
- A favorable history of successful rulings in federal court.
Capable and Effective Criminal Conspiracy Defense
If you need insight into possible defense options to your criminal conspiracy charges, please contact our legal team today for a confidential consultation. We can help you feel back in control and clear about your options.