Morgantown Conspiracy Lawyer

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Morgantown Conspiracy Attorney

Anyone charged with organized crime may be charged with an offense related to criminal conspiracy. Engaging in a criminal conspiracy is an offense that should be taken seriously. The penalties for conspiracy-related crimes are often harsher than offenses that involve only one person. With the help of a Morgantown conspiracy lawyer, you may be able to have the charges reduced and the penalties lowered for your criminal charge.

Morgantown Conspiracy Lawyer

A Look at Conspiracy Crimes

For people who reside in Morgantown and throughout West Virginia, there are statutes on what is considered a conspiracy crime at the federal and state levels. Conspiracy crimes are unique in that they do not always have to involve a crime that has been committed. Rather, the statutes allow defendants to be arrested and charged with a crime simply for planning or organizing one or more criminal acts. Many federal laws pertaining to conspiracies effectively criminalize meetings of the minds.

One example of a federal conspiracy charge would be if multiple people conspired to defraud the United States. For example, multiple people could have discussed overcharging the government on a contract agreement. Any conspiracy must involve two or more people.

Anyone who is involved in drug trafficking or manufacturing and who works with other co-conspirators may face a criminal charge under the RICO Act. This additional charge can add up to 10 years to a sentence. Many conspiracy crime charges are tied to the manufacturing and sale of illegal drugs, money laundering, embezzlement, illegal gambling, and more. This is because these crimes are often planned out ahead of time and require two or more participants.

Drug manufacturers have to plan their illegal business transactions ahead of time. Anyone trafficking drugs has to have an idea of where they are starting and where they are going. Drug sellers often know ahead of time who they are buying from and selling to.

Anyone involved in that process could be charged with conspiracy, either as the sole charge or as an additional charge. Sometimes, law enforcement and prosecutors seek conspiracy charges when they do not have evidence for crimes that have occurred.

RICO Act Charges

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act was legislated to target criminal organizations. Rather than prosecute individuals, the federal government can use the act to arrest and charge a large group of co-conspirators under the federal act. RICO laws are now commonplace as other states have adopted visions of federal law that often cover additional state crimes.

Common crimes covered under racketeering laws include drug crimes, forgery, embezzlement, gambling, and extortion, among other crimes.

State and federal prosecutors look at several factors when determining charges and penalties. These include:

  • The acts committed
  • Victims involved
  • Duration of the criminal enterprise
  • Whether the acts crossed state lines

Racketeering crimes that cross state lines would involve the federal government, but West Virginia has conspiracy statutes for a wide range of criminal acts. For any RICO crime to be proven, prosecutors must prove several elements of the crime, including that money was generated from the criminal enterprise and that the participants profited from those funds.

If you are facing criminal conspiracy charges, your criminal defense attorney will work to have your charges reduced or dropped altogether if prosecutors cannot reach the high bar of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

There may be a lack of proof on the part of state or federal prosecutors. Prosecutors must disclose all the evidence that they have, and a careful examination of the evidence may show that the government does not have adequate evidence to prosecute your case. If prosecutors are relying heavily on witness testimony for their case, your defense attorney can look for inconsistencies and contradictions in that testimony.

If any evidence was gathered in a way that violated your constitutional rights, your lawyer can move to have that evidence removed. Any steps that weaken the state’s case could bolster your chances of having the charges greatly reduced or dropped.


Q: How Do You Get Out of a Conspiracy Charge?

A: One way to improve your chances of avoiding a conspiracy charge is to hire an experienced conspiracy defense attorney. Conspiracy laws are complex and require the counsel of an attorney who understands the applicable laws and how to defend clients against those charges. The lawyer will work to prove that there was no conspiracy.

Q: What Is the Sentence for Conspiracy Charges?

A: Conspiracy charges often add penalties to existing sentencing guidelines. The main factor determining how a defendant is sentenced is the actual crime. Secondary considerations would be aggravating circumstances like a past criminal record. Federal RICO charges can add several years or longer on top of penalties tied to the original crime.

Q: What Types of Crime Are Commonly Used To Prove Conspiracy?

A: Drug crimes are commonly used by prosecutors to prove a conspiracy. Crimes involving drugs often involve several people or groups working together to manufacture, distribute, and sell drugs. Being charged with a conspiracy crime does not necessarily mean that a crime occurred. Simply planning a crime could be enough to be charged with a crime.

Q: Do I Need an Attorney to Defend Myself From Conspiracy Charges?

A: You have every right to defend yourself against criminal conspiracy charges, but you would be well-advised to seek legal counsel for your defense. Conspiracy charges are complicated, and even seasoned defense attorneys may not understand this area of criminal law. By working with a conspiracy lawyer in Morgantown, you can greatly improve the chances that your rights will be defended throughout the criminal court proceedings.

Schedule Your Morgantown Conspiracy Lawyer Consultation Today

Conspiracy crimes pose unique challenges for prosecutors who have to prove that a criminal act occurred or was about to occur due to the organized and coordinated efforts of a group of co-conspirators. Prosecutors must also prove criminal intent. Your Morgantown conspiracy lawyer can work to weaken the government’s case through a careful and methodical examination of the evidence. To schedule your consultation, contact our office today.


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