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Oakland County Conspiracy Lawyer

A conspiracy offense is when two or more people agree to work together to commit a crime. Intent is the key element in a conspiracy charge. The crime does not need to actually occur, as long as prosecutors can prove that the conspirators intended to commit a crime through collaboration.

If you have been accused of conspiracy, contact an Oakland County conspiracy lawyer to review the charges against you. A distinguished criminal attorney can help you determine your legal defenses so that you can make an informed decision about what is in your best interests.

Elements of Conspiracy Charges

Conspiracy charges consist of several elements, including specific intent, legal intent, and a knowing agreement. Conspiracy requires specific intent. It is not enough that someone was simply in the vicinity when the conspiracy was discussed, or even that something that person did was helpful to the conspirators.

A conspiracy must have an illegal intent as well, relating to a specific crime such as theft, assault, or battery. Oakland County conspiracy lawyers have seen charges brought when two or more people work together to commit a legal act by illegal means. An example of this would be stealing someone’s food stamps and then selling them to others. Food stamps are legal, but stealing them and selling them to others is not.

What is Considered Guilty?

To be guilty of conspiracy, a defendant needs to have known that the plan was to commit a crime, and agreed to take part in it. The agreement does not have to be written down; however, the evidence must show there was one. A defendant in a conspiracy case is not liable for the acts of other people unless those acts were part of the agreement. If three people conspired to rob a bank, but two of the three decided to rob a convenience store on the ride home, the third person could not be held liable as they did not agree to participate in the second crime.

Conspiracy cases are generally very complex, and law enforcement officials often use conspiracy charges to pit co-conspirators against each other. This can result in some defendants getting stricter sentences than others. An experienced Oakland County conspiracy lawyer can help protect the rights of anyone they may represent.

Criminal Conspiracy Penalties

The criminal penalties in a Michigan conspiracy case are tied to the underlying crime(s) conspirators intended to commit such as theft, assault, battery, et cetera. These penalties are distinguished by the length of prison time associated with the crime.

For a crime punishable by more than one year of prison, a person charged with conspiracy to commit that crime could receive the requisite amount of jail time for the crime itself, plus a fine of $10,000. For a crime punishable by less than one year of prison, a person charged with conspiracy could receive up to a year in prison, up to $1,000 in fines, or both. The statute also dictates penalties for conspiring to commit a legal act in an illegal way (as discussed above) and conspiring to violate the law by illegal gambling or waging. An experienced Oakland County conspiracy lawyer can explain how the statute relates to an individual’s situation.

Working With an Oakland County Conspiracy Attorney

If you have been charged with conspiracy, contact an Oakland County conspiracy lawyer to protect your rights. It is important to know which legal defenses apply to your situation and whether law enforcement officials may be turning co-conspirators against each other. Work with an adept conspiracy attorney that can devote the time and resources necessary to build a solid defense for you.