What is a Conspiracy?
In Federal Court many crimes are charged as a conspiracy. Crimes such as Conspiracy to Possess and Distribute Cocaine, or Conspiracy to Commit Money Laundering are good examples of conspiracy crimes. Why are these crimes charged as a conspiracy instead of drug distribution or money laundering? Part of the answer is in the definition of conspiracy: a conspiracy is an agreement between two or more people to commit a crime. Two things must take place for a conspiracy to exist:
- An agreement between two or more people; and
- An overt act
Another major reason conspiracy is used so much in federal court is because it is often easier for a federal prosecutor to prove conspiracy instead of the other crimes that could be charged.
Why Is Conspiracy Used in Federal Courts So Often?
Conspiracy is a very powerful tool for federal prosecutors to utilize because it allows them to hold each individual responsible for the actions of all of other people involved in the conspiracy. This is often the case with a crime like Conspiracy to Manufacture Methamphetamine. There are usually one or two main "cooks" that actually make the meth, but they will have many people buying boxes of pseudoephedrine for them so they have the raw materials necessary to manufacture the meth. Once a case like this is charged as a conspiracy in federal court, each of the people who bought pseudoedphedrine could be found guilty of Conspiracy to Manufacture Methamphetamine, even though all they did was buy pseudoephedrine and give them to the "cooks".
Conspiracy to Commit Murder When There Is No Murder?
Another example of the power of conspiracy law is in Conspiracy to Commit Murder. A person can be found guilty of Conspiracy to Commit Murder even though no one was killed. The reason is that there only needs to be an agreement between two or more people to kill and any overt act toward the murder for a person to be found guilty of Conspiracy to Commit Murder.
Conspiracy is a powerful tool for federal prosecutors. If you have been charged with a conspiracy in federal court, then it is important you hire an experienced federal criminal defense attorney to protect your rights and fight the charges. Contact attorney Jason A. Korner at (314) 227-1949 to set up a consultation to protect yourself and your freedom.