Conspiracy charges are often taken incredibly seriously in Maryland. A unique crime in itself, an individual does not actually have to carry out the crime agreed to in order to be charged with a crime, they simply need to have agreed to commit said crime. The prosecution of Maryland conspiracy cases is often both thorough and complex, which is why the assistance of an experienced attorney is crucial. The proper lawyer will be able to build a case which can effectively defend you in court.
The way Maryland prosecutors treat conspiracy cases depends greatly on the nature of the conspiracy. For example, a prosecutor will treat conspiracy to obtain marijuana for personal use incredibly differently from a conspiracy to commit murder. The degree of intensity is directly related to the nature of the offense for which the conspiracy is set. However, the conspiracy itself is a different criminal element than having an impulse or a single-handed crime, because with conspiracy, two or more individuals are involved. This creates a higher implied level of thinking.
Although many individuals may impulsively commit a crime, to take the time to speak and agree on something with somebody else or with another party involved is a more advanced type of criminal element and mindset. The prosecution of Maryland conspiracy cases is almost entirely dependent on how the judges and prosecutors react to the evidence they have gathered.
The prosecution of Maryland conspiracy cases often depends on the burden of proof the prosecution has. The element that the prosecution needs to prove is that two or more individuals entered into an agreement to commit a criminal act with the actual intent of carrying it out. Intent is the most important element they must prove. Essentially, intent is a state of mind. All that is needed to be proven in this case is that an individual entered into an agreement.
Rarely does a conspiracy agreement exist in writing. This obstacle is sometimes difficult for the prosecution to prove. However, the prosecution of a Maryland conspiracy case depends heavily on it. If an attorney cannot prove a state of mind, they may be able to prove there is an agreement. However, the prosecution may not be able to prove that there was intent to carry it out, which is an essential element of conspiracy.
Conspiracy is one of the few inchoate crimes that an individual could be convicted both separately of the inchoate crime, as well as the committed crime. Unlike an attempt to commit a crime, an individual cannot be charged and convicted of both attempted murder and murder, for example. With a conspiracy charge, the prosecutors and law enforcement want to penalize individuals for simply coming to the agreement to commit an act.
Conspiracy charges are sometimes part of a larger case. This is especially true if a person is charged with both a conspiracy charge, and the crime in which that conspiracy entailed. If law enforcement is able to stop the crime from happening, then all the person is facing is conspiracy. If the crime is carried out, the prosecution will charge both the crime itself and the act of conspiracy. More often than not, if the crime does not happen, it is because it was stopped in time by law enforcement. However, often the crimes are carried out and law enforcement will only realize there was a conspiracy after the act occurred. The prosecution of Maryland conspiracy cases relies heavily on proving the agreement existed, and whether or not it had been carried out.