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What to Expect in a Maryland Federal Conspiracy Case

Maryland federal prosecutors treat conspiracy cases aggressively. It is essential that someone is prepared for their trial and understands what to expect in a Maryland federal conspiracy case. These are priority cases for federal prosecutors. Whenever a tremendous amount of resources is used to investigate a case to bring multiple defendants together for criminal charges in a federal case, the prosecutors treat that most seriously. They attempt to prosecute everyone involved in the case; pursue the most serious charges possible, and pursue heavy punishments for the co-conspirators.

If you are facing conspiracy charges, it is critical that you attain a lawyer right away. The more time a dedicated federal conspiracy lawyer has to develop a strong defense strategy, the higher chance for a favorable outcome.

Charges for Conspiracy and Crime

A person can be charged with federal conspiracy to commit a crime in addition to committing the actual crime. There is a federal conspiracy statute that addresses an individual attempting to defraud the United States with two or more individuals. There is criminal conduct and more than one person agreed to engage in the criminal conduct. The first thing to be charged is the actual criminal conduct. When two or more people are engaged in any kind of illegal activity, they could be charged with conspiracy and the underlying offense. The government may charge anything and everything possible against the defendants in the case.

As an example, with a drug conspiracy case, the government might have individual charges against Defendant 1 for possession with intent to distribute a certain quantity of cocaine; Defendant 2 for the actual distribution; and Defendant 3 for possession of cocaine and possession of a firearm during the commission of the offense. They face the individual charges against them and all three faces the conspiracy charges because they acted in concert with regard to the trafficking of the cocaine.

Released on Bail, Bond or Recognizance

Whether a person is released on bail, bond, or their own recognizance is determined on a case-by-case basis by the court regarding the appropriate release conditions. Often, people in federal cases are released on bond where they put up a sum of money to ensure they will return to court. The issue of bond depends on the type of case, whether the person has any criminal history, whether the offense is non-violent and does not involve massive quantities of drugs or stolen money. When the case is not severe, a person might be released on their own recognizance.

Conditions of Release

In any federal case, the court could release a person on bond, on their own recognizance, or under supervision by the pretrial services agency where they have to check in by phone or in person. The person may be subject to regular drug testing. With a federal case, the person must turn in their passport. The federal courts want to ensure the person does not flee the jurisdiction, specifically the United States and outside of the reach of the United States Court.

The court looks at the person’s criminal history, their alleged role in the conspiracy, the underlying crime in the conspiracy, and the number of other people involved. Different factors are involved in the court’s decision regarding the appropriate level of supervision or type of release. If someone is already under supervision, such as probation or parole, they have a lengthy criminal history, the case involves violent conduct, or there are many conspirators involved in a large drug conspiracy or terrorist conspiracy, the person can expect to be held in custody pending resolution of the case.

Qualities of a Knowledgeable Attorney

For a Maryland conspiracy case, a person should look for an attorney who regularly practices in that court and in that jurisdiction. The attorney should have experience handling federal cases involving a conspiracy. Depending on the conspiracy, the person should make sure that the attorney has experience dealing with that underlying type of crime. There are some defense attorneys who specialize in certain white-collar crimes to handle fraud and embezzlement-type cases. Many times, there might be a conspiracy charge in those types of cases.

The attorney should have specific experience with that jurisdiction, with federal cases, and with that exact type of federal case. If you are facing conspiracy charges, it is imperative that you attain an attorney who understands what to expect in a Maryland Federal conspiracy case.