A conspiracy is an agreement between two (2) or more persons to commit an unlawful act. Thus, a person by himself cannot commit conspiracy. However, it is not necessary that more than one person be charged to criminally prosecute a conspiracy.
To be guilty of a criminal conspiracy in Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth must show that a defendant, with the intent of promoting or facilitating the commission of a crime, (i) agreed with another person that one or more of them would engage in conduct that constituted a crime, or an attempt or solicitation to commit the crime, or (ii) agreed to aid another person in the planning or commission of a crime, or of an attempt or solicitation to commit the crime.
Bringing a conspiracy charge is a simple and effective way for prosecutors to try to convict many parties alleged to be involved in a common scheme of criminal activity. In fact, a person need even not be physically present when the underlying crime is committed to be responsible for a conspiracy. Many if not most conspiracy charges involve drug trafficking charges, and are often brought by Federal authorities. In either case, if you are convicted of conspiracy, the penalties will be the same as those for the underlying offense, which can mean significant jail time for individuals who were nowhere near the ‘scene of the crime’.
To defend against a charge of conspiracy, an attorney needs to know not only the facts of the case, but the ins and outs of any other individuals’ cases alleged to be connected to the matter. The attorneys at Allegheny Attorneys have the experience and attention to detail to effectively defend against both state and federal criminal conspiracy charges. Contact AAAL today if you have such a charge to set up a free consultation or in jail visit.