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Can I Face Federal Criminal Charges for Planning a Crime but Not Following Through with It?

Posted on in Criminal Defense

TX defense lawyerMany people are surprised to learn that the act of planning a criminal offense with another person is, itself, a crime. Talking with another individual about a planned offense can lead to criminal charges for conspiracy – even if you did not follow through with the plan.

Federal criminal charges are often penalized by significant prison terms and other harsh consequences. If you or a loved one are facing charges for conspiracy or another federal offense, it is crucial that you speak to a lawyer right away. Do not consent to police interrogation or discuss the alleged offense with anyone other than your attorney. You have important rights, including the right to avoid self-incrimination, and you need to assert those rights immediately.

Understanding Conspiracy Charges

Federal law states that the crime of conspiracy occurs when:

  • At least two individuals plan to commit an act that is illegal under the United States Code.
  • At least one of the individuals takes an overt action to further the plan.

For example, consider a group of people who discuss a plan to rob a bank. If one of the individuals in the group takes the first step toward the offense by purchasing a firearm, everyone involved can be charged with conspiracy.

Almost any type of illegal or fraudulent activity prohibited by federal law can lead to conspiracy charges, including:

  • Drug trafficking and other federal drug crimes
  • Mail fraud
  • Mortgage fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Healthcare fraud
  • Impeding or injuring an officer
  • Kidnapping
  • Aiding prisoners of war or enemy aliens
  • Using defense information to assist a foreign government
  • Soliciting a crime of violence
  • Money laundering
  • Human trafficking
  • Counterfeiting

The criminal penalties associated with federal conspiracy charges vary based on the type of crime a person is alleged to have planned. Individuals convicted of federal criminal conspiracy can face up to five years in federal prison as well as heavy fines.

Contact a Frisco Criminal Defense Lawyer

You can be convicted of a federal criminal offense for the act of planning to commit a crime. Conspiracy charges often carry substantial prison sentences and other penalties. If you or a loved one were accused of criminal conspiracy, contact our Collin County criminal defense attorneys right away. Our skilled team has over 25 years of legal experience. We are ready to put this experience to work to defend you against conspiracy charges. Call Law Offices of Biederman & Burleson P.L.L.C. at 469-333-3333 for a free consultation.

Source:

https://www.justice.gov/archives/jm/criminal-resource-manual-923-18-usc-371-conspiracy-defraud-us

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