New York Conspiracy Crime Defense Lawyer
Conspiracy is a favorite charge of New York police and prosecutors. If law enforcement can connect you to a criminal conspiracy, they can not only charge you for the act of conspiracy; they may be able to charge you for the underlying crime, as well as for acts committed by other members of the alleged conspiracy. Conspiracy is a crime chargeable under New York state law as well as federal law.
If you face conspiracy charges in New York, you need help from a zealous and diligent criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. You have the right to defend yourself, and the prosecution has the burden of proving every element of the crime before you can be found guilty. The Goshen criminal defense attorneys at Dupée & Monroe, P.C., have spent years defending clients accused of conspiracy and all manner of serious crimes in New York, and we’re ready to fight for your rights and your freedom.
What Is Conspiracy?
Conspiracy occurs when two or more people agree to commit a crime. A conspiracy can be as wide-ranging as an organized criminal enterprise or as narrow as two people agreeing to rob a bank. The crime of conspiracy occurs once there’s an agreement; conspiracy does not require that the crime actually occurred or that it was successful.
In New York, the crime of conspiracy is covered by Penal Law section 105 et seq. In order to obtain a conviction for base-level conspiracy, Conspiracy in the Sixth Degree, the prosecution must establish:
- The defendant had the intent to commit conduct constituting a crime
- The defendant agreed with one or more persons to engage in that criminal conduct
- At least one “overt act” was taken by at least one conspirator to further the criminal plan
Conspiracy requires at least two participants. There must be intent and a “meeting of the minds,” i.e., an agreement to commit a crime, as well as some act taken in furtherance of the conspiracy. Conspiracies are often established through the testimony of only one alleged conspirator; law enforcement is often able to get one party to “flip” and testify against the others.
Degrees and Penalties for Conspiracy
There are six levels of conspiracy in New York, the severity of which depends upon the nature of the underlying crime and the nature of the participants. The degrees of conspiracy in New York are as follows:
- Conspiracy in the Sixth Degree. Base-level conspiracy is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to three months in jail or one year on probation.
- Conspiracy in the Fifth Degree. Fifth-degree conspiracy is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail. Fifth-degree conspiracy occurs when:
- The underlying crime is a felony, or
- The defendant is over 18 and conspires with one or more people under 16.
- Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree. Fourth-degree conspiracy is a Class E felony, punishable by up to four years in prison. Fourth-degree conspiracy occurs when:
- The underlying crime is a class B or class C felony;
- The underlying crime involves money laundering; or
- The underlying crime is a felony, the defendant is over 18, and the defendant conspires with one or more people under 16.
- Conspiracy in the Third Degree. Third-degree conspiracy is a Class D felony, punishable by up to seven years in prison. Third-degree conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime is a class B or class C felony, the defendant is over 18, and the defendant conspires with one or more people under 16.
- Conspiracy in the Second Degree. Second-degree conspiracy is a Class B felony, punishable by up to 25 years in prison. Second-degree conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime is a class A felony.
- Conspiracy in the First Degree. First-Degree conspiracy is a Class A felony, punishable by up to life in prison. First-degree conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime is a class A felony, the defendant is over 18, and the defendant conspires with one or more people under 16.
Seasoned Conspiracy Defense Attorneys Fighting For You
If you have been charged with conspiracy under federal or New York State law, you need seasoned and effective legal help on your side as soon as possible. The zealous criminal defense attorneys at Dupée & Monroe have years of experience fighting against conspiracy.
We will look for ways to undermine the prosecutor’s case, limiting the connection between our client and other alleged members of the conspiracy to either obtain a more favorable plea bargain or get the charges kicked entirely. We’ll fight to make sure you are not held accountable for crimes in which you took no part, and if there was no “meeting of the minds” to establish the conspiracy in the first place, we’ll protect you against unjust charges.
It’s not enough for the person to have a mere “presence” or “association” with the conspiracy; the defendant must have actually agreed to join the conspiracy. Moreover, the defendant may have a defense if they affirmatively withdrew from the conspiracy in time.
At every step of the way, we will make sure that the government has not violated your rights, and we will ensure that any unlawfully obtained evidence is not used against you. At Dupée & Monroe, we protect our clients, and we protect their rights.
If you have been arrested and charged with conspiracy under New York state or federal law, or if you’re currently under investigation for a conspiracy crime, contact Dupée & Monroe, P.C. for a conspiracy defense lawyer in Goshen. We represent clients charged with criminal conspiracy and other serious offenses in Orange County and throughout the Hudson Valley.