Under California’s conspiracy law, Penal Code § 182, if two or more persons conspire to: commit any crime; falsely and maliciously to indict another for any crime, or to procure another to be charged or arrested for any crime; falsely to move or maintain any suit, action, or proceeding; to cheat and defraud any person of any property, by any means which are in themselves criminal, or to obtain money or property by false pretenses or by false promises with fraudulent intent not to perform those promises; to commit any act injurious to the public health, to public morals, or to pervert or obstruct justice, or the due administration of the laws; or to commit any crime against the person of the President or Vice President of the United States, the Governor of any state or territory, any United States justice to judge, or the secretary of any of the executive departments of the United States has committed conspiracy.
Conspiracy is simply when an agreement is made by two or more individuals to commit a crime and one of those individuals commits an act to further the agreement to commit that particular crime. Conspiracy is a crime regardless of whether the plan to commit the crime was completed. As long as an action was taken toward committing the crime after the agreement to commit the crime was made, you could be charged with conspiracy.
The punishment for conspiracy under Penal Code § 182 can vary depending on the circumstances surrounding your case. For example, when two or more persons conspire to commit any crime against the person of any official, such as the President, Vice President, a Governor, judge, justice, or secretary of an executive department, they are guilty of a felony and are punishable by imprisonment pursuant to Penal Code § 1170(h) for five, seven, or nine years. If two or more persons conspire to commit any other felony, they shall be punishable in the same manner and to the same extent as is provided for the punishment of the felony.
You can also be convicted of federal conspiracy. Under 18 U.S. Code § 371, if two or more persons conspire either to commit any offense against the United States, or any agency thereof in any manner or for any purpose, and one or more of such persons do any act to effect the object of the conspiracy, each shall be fined under § 371 of the U.S. Code or imprisoned not more than five years, or both. 18 U.S. Code § 371 warns that if the commission of the offense, which is the object of the conspiracy, is only a misdemeanor, then the punishment for that conspiracy will not exceed the maximum punishment provided for such a misdemeanor.
If you have been charged with conspiracy, contact an experienced attorney immediately. At Bay Area Criminal Lawyers, PC, we will be dedicated and invested in your case and build a vigorous defense to protect your rights and freedom. We will strive to secure the most favorable outcome for you.