If you are currently facing a charge of conspiracy, you may be wondering what you exactly did to warrant suspicion. Your alleged criminal associate may be a friend, a family member, a minor acquaintance, or even a complete stranger. Perhaps he or she committed the crime, but you have never done an illegal thing in your life.
How did you get in this situation? Were you simply at the wrong place at the wrong time? Or maybe someone falsely accused you of being involved? Whatever the case, you need to prove your innocence, but you cannot do it alone. You need legal representation from a dependable attorney.
At Peek Toland & Castañeda PLLC, our experienced Austin criminal defense lawyers never give up on a client, no matter how dire a case may seem. We use the full scope of our knowledge and resources to find legal solutions to the toughest problems. Whether through testimony or material evidence, we build effective defenses that work toward getting the court on the side of our client. If you have any inquiries about your criminal case, please call us today at (512) 474-4445.
How is Conspiracy Defined by Texas Law?
Conspiracy essentially involves two or more actors who engage in concerted criminal activity. An individual or business commits conspiracy under Texas Penal Code Section 15.02 if they commit one of the following actions:
- With the purpose of facilitating or promoting its commission, agrees with another person or business to engage in conduct that constitutes a crime or an attempt or solicitation of a crime; or
- Agrees to aid another person or business in planning, committing, or attempting to solicit a crime.
What is the Punishment for Conspiracy in Texas?
According to Texas criminal law, the penalty for a crime of conspiracy depends heavily on the underlying crime that was committed. Generally, a conspiracy conviction results in the same penalties as the associated crime. In federal courts, conspiracy is generally punished by a prison sentence of up to five years. However, certain conspiracy crimes, such as conspiracy to deliver drugs, are treated more severely by federal courts.
Conspiracy is a charge that is brought up mostly in federal drug or white collar cases. State conspiracy cases are few and far between.
What Must the Prosecution Prove in a Conspiracy Case?
The prosecution must prove that an agreement took place and also that an “overt act” was taken by the defendant to further the agreement. The “overt act” itself does not have to be criminal in nature; only if it contributes to the crime can it be considered illegal as part of a conspiracy plot. For example, waiting in your car outside of a store is not an illegal action in isolation. However, if you are waiting in your car outside of a store because you are acting as a lookout man for a robbery, then you are committing the crime of conspiracy.
In addition to establishing the “overt act,” the prosecution must prove the agreement itself. The agreement does not have to be explicit; in fact, in many conspiracy cases, the agreement is inferred from other evidence. If it can be determined that the involved parties met and collaborated on a crime, the prosecution has a case.
Providing Passionate Legal Representation
The aggressive criminal defense attorneys with Peek Toland & Castañeda PLLC, will do whatever it takes to disprove the prosecution’s claims and exonerate you of your charges. If we cannot net you a desirable outcome in the negotiation phase, we will fight hard during the trial. Please speak with one of our attorneys before talking with anyone else, especially the police. Contact us online or call us at (512) 474-4445 today to receive reliable legal advice on how you can protect your future and your freedom.