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Maryland Federal Conspiracy Penalties

Federal Conspiracy encompasses a broad range of conduct. Under 18 USC § 371, conspiracy is defined as a plan by two or more people to commit any offense against the United States or defraud the United States or any agency in any manner or for any purpose.

To pursue Maryland federal conspiracy penalties, the alleged offense must be a common plan between two or more people, and there must be one overt act taken in furtherance of the conspiracy. Therefore, it may be critical to speak with a skilled federal conspiracy attorney about how to defend your rights in court.

What are Federal Conspiracy Charges?

Being federally charged with conspiracy means the government has a substantial reason to believe that the person participated in a conspiracy to some degree, and that either the individual or a co-conspirators took some act in furtherance of the conspiracy. It is a serious federal crime.

The government does not bring federal charges lightly, so it means that there is some reason that they have invested a significant amount of time and resources into the investigation and into bringing the charges. While they may be wrong or have a misplaced belief that a crime occurred, there is some basis for that. They believe that they have some evidence for that, and that is why they file these charges.

Common Penalties for Conspiring at a Federal Level

Federal conspiracy is a federal crime and it can lead to probation, fines, and collateral consequences that come with the conviction in terms of how can it affect their employment, housing, eligibility for federal benefits, and other things of that nature. Maryland federal conspiracy penalties often depend on the nature of the allegations of the crime.

Understanding Federal Sentencing Guidelines

Common Maryland federal conspiracy penalties, the sentencing guidelines, and the maximum statutory penalty derive from the underlying offense. For example, the statue itself has a maximum penalty of five years of incarceration if the offense is a felony. If it is conspiracy to commit a misdemeanor, then the maximum sentence under the statute is whatever the maximum sentence could be for that misdemeanor.

In the sentencing guidelines there are no specific guidelines for conspiracy; the guidelines are derived from the underlying offense. If it is a relatively minor offense with lower guidelines, then the sentence for the conspiracy charge is going to be reduced. If it is a conspiracy to commit a major or serious felony or offense, it will have a pretty significant penalty and the sentencing guidelines are relatively high for the conspiracy charge.

Aggravating Factors Leading to Conviction

There are many aggravating factors involved with a federal conviction. One of the specific factors that they look at in a conspiracy charge is the role of the individual in the conspiracy. Another question about aggravating factors is that the person has a minor role in the conspiracy, which can lead to a reduction in the sentence. Being at the center of the conspiracy in a supervisory or managerial role can increase their possible sentence.