Conspiracy is an agreement between two or more persons to commit a criminal act. It is one of the most charged offenses in federal court. The United States Attorneys prefers to charge conspiracy because it does not require the prosecution to prove that a defendant actual committed a crime. Federal conspiracy charges can be made whether the crime was, committed or not, in whole or in part, by one conspirator or others.
Hearsay statements by a co-conspirators made during the course of and in furtherance of the conspiracy can be admissible. Another wrinkle in conspiracy prosecutions is that a defendant convicted of a conspiracy will be held responsible for all acts of co-conspirators that were reasonably foreseeable and in furtherance of the conspiracy.
18 U.S.C. § 371 is the catch all conspiracy statute but this is not the only conspiracy statute in the United States Code. Section 371 prohibits two types of conspiracy: (1) an agreement to commit any offense against theUnited States and (2) an agreement to defraud the United States. The government is required to prove three things to establish a conspiracy (1) an agreement to commit an unlawful act; (2) the defendant’s knowledge of the agreement and voluntary participation in it; and (3) an overt act by at least one of the co-conspirators in furtherance of the conspiracy.
Generally, there are two types of conspiracies. There are chain conspiracies and hub and spoke conspiracies. A hub and spoke conspiracy is where a single person forms the hub and deals with others who are outside the hub. A chain conspiracy there is typically one single organization that is linked by common actors.
An overt act is a statement or act that is done by one or more conspirators in an effort to effect the purpose of the conspiracy. An overt act is not required to be a crime. Types of conspiracies we defend:
• Money laundering
• Possession with the intent to distribute
• Sex trafficking
• Firearms trafficking
Possible defenses to conspiracy include mere presence, withdrawal from the conspiracy, or that the defendant was not a part of the conspiracy.
Federal sentencing is different than state sentencing. A United States District Judge will apply the United States Sentencing Guidelines. The Sentencing Guidelines are a complex maze of regulations that determine a potential sentence. The Major Law Firm has the experience to exploit any opportunities for a downward departure or variance, which would result in a lower sentence than what the guidelines or prosecutor recommends. The Sentencing Guidelines are advisory, thus the federal conspiracy lawyer at the Major Law Firm can advocate for the lowest possible sentences. The Major Law Firm has had success making motions for downward departures and variance. At sentencing the United States District Judge will consider the factors contained in 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) .
The Federal government aggressively prosecutes conspiracy cases. If you are under investigation or have been charged with any drug or conspiracy crime, it is in your best interest to retain an attorney who is willing to aggressively defend your rights and your freedom. The Major Law Firm has a positive track record for achieving positive results for his clients. Call us today for your free, confidential consultation.