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How Do Prosecutors Prove Conspiracy to Commit a Crime?

Conspiracy crimes are unique in that you don’t have to have actually committed any crime to face charges. Instead, there are two key components for a conspiracy crime: agreement and intent.

Agreement

This is the part of the conspiracy crime when you and your co-defendant(s) make the initial agreement and plan to commit a crime. For example, if someone approaches you about transporting drugs and you agree to do so. Agreement alone is enough to warrant a conspiracy to commit drug trafficking charge.

Intent

Intent is also a crucial part of a conspiracy crime, and you must have intent in two ways to warrant a charge. First, your intent must be to commit a criminal offense. If you agree to do something you did not know was illegal, you did not have criminal intent. This is an important distinction.

Second, you must have had reasonable intent to follow through with the actions that you and your co-defendant agreed on. In other words, simply joking around about committing a crime isn’t solid enough intent to warrant criminal prosecution.

Are Penalties Lighter for Conspiracy Crimes?

Penalties for conspiracy vary greatly depending on the circumstances involved. The charge could result in misdemeanor or felony charges. In some cases, the conspiracy penalty is the same as it would have been if the planned offense had been carried out.

Additionally, if the defendant committed a crime and had conspired with someone beforehand, they could face a separate charge for the conspiracy component.

Conspiracy Charges Defense in Florida

At Hager & Schwartz, P.A., our team has in-depth knowledge of how prosecutors go after conspiracy cases. We want to work with you to ensure that you have the strongest defense possible for the conspiracy accusations. Contact us online or by phone (305) 330-1360 to speak with our Miami defense attorneys today.