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Prosecutors usually bring conspiracy charges with another crime, and you might pay less attention to the conspiracy allegations than the underlying accusations. However, conspiracy can be a significant charge that requires a tailored defense.
A Tolleson conspiracy lawyer can work to defend every aspect of the charges you face. With years of experience working with people accused of misdemeanor and serious felony offenses, the skilled attorneys at Grand Canyon Law Group know how to examine the evidence, find its weaknesses, and fight for people facing criminal charges.
Every crime requires prosecutors to prove certain elements to win a conviction. Arizona Revised Statutes §13-1003 defines a conspiracy as an agreement between at least two people to commit a crime and some action toward completing it.
It does not matter if the crime never happened, and the step toward completion of the plan could be quite small. Conspiracy charges do not require a step toward completion if the crime is a felony upon another person, first-degree burglary, or arson.
A seasoned defense attorney in Tolleson can use various strategies to defeat conspiracy charges. A lawyer can present evidence indicating that the parties were not serious when they pretended to plan the crime and had no intention of carrying it out. The intent to carry out the plan is a critical element. Legal counsel might argue that the plan was not criminal or offer an innocent explanation for the actions allegedly taken to further the supposed offense.
The severity of a conspiracy charge usually matches the severity of the underlying crime. For example, if a person faces Class 4 felony charges for possessing narcotics, a related conspiracy charge would also be a Class 4 felony. The only exception is when a person faces a Class 1 felony charge with a potential life sentence in prison. A conviction for conspiracy to commit a Class 1 felony could lead to a presumptive sentence of 25 years to life in prison for a first offender.
Arizona’s complex sentencing scheme weighs multiple factors in determining a sentence. Each crime has a presumptive sentence, but the presumptive sentence is longer if the accused has prior convictions.
In addition, a judge could subtract time from the presumptive sentence if mitigating factors exist that merit leniency. On the other hand, the judge could add time if they believe aggravating factors warrant a harsher penalty. Our Tolleson attorneys can present persuasive evidence of mitigating factors to reduce the potential sentence for a conspiracy charge.
Challenging a prosecutor’s evidence of conspiracy is one way to defeat the charges. Other options might include arguing that the arrest was improper or that a police officer failed to inform a suspect of their rights. Issues with police procedure during the investigation and arrest could lead to a dismissal of the charges.
Depending on the underlying crime, law enforcement personnel sometimes use paid informants, electronic surveillance, and undercover police officers to obtain evidence of criminal activity. If the law enforcement officers did not follow proper procedures when using these investigatory tools, a judge might suppress the evidence they collected by illegal means.
The law allows a person to renounce a conspiracy before they are arrested and before the crime happens. People with knowledge of a future crime should immediately speak with an experienced local attorney to preserve their right to raise a renunciation defense.
Facing criminal charges alone or with an inexperienced attorney is foolhardy. Defeating conspiracy charges requires a skilled and experienced legal professional.
A Tolleson conspiracy lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group can explore every possible defense that might be viable in your case. We will fight to get your charges dropped or reduced and work to preserve your way of life. Reach out as soon as possible after your arrest.