Criminal Conspiracy in Florida

A criminal conspiracy is an express or implied agreement or understanding between two or more persons to accomplish a specific criminal offense.

In Florida, the crime of criminal conspiracy is committed when a person conspires with one or more persons to commit a criminal offense. [1]

Penalties for Criminal Conspiracy

Criminal Conspiracy is a derivative crime, which means the applicable penalties are determined by the underlying crime intended to be committed.

First Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy

First Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime to be committed is a Capital Felony.

First Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy is classified as a felony of the first degree and assigned an offense severity ranking one level below the ranking that the underlying offense would be assigned under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

If convicted of First Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy, a judge will be required to impose a minimum prison sentence absent grounds to impose a downward departure sentence and can also impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to thirty (30) years in prison.
  • Up to thirty (30) years of probation.
  • Up to $10,000 in fines.

Second Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy

Second Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime to be committed is a Life Felony or a First Degree Felony.

Second Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy is classified as a felony of the second degree and assigned an offense severity ranking one level below the ranking that the underlying offense would be assigned under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

If convicted of Second Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy, a judge may be required to impose a prison sentence absent grounds to impose a downward departure sentence and can also impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to fifteen (15) years in prison.
  • Up to fifteen (15) years of probation.
  • Up to $10,000 in fines.

Third Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy

Third Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime to be committed is a Second Degree Felony or a Third Degree Felony with an offense severity ranking of 3 or higher under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

Third Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy is classified as a felony of the third degree and assigned an offense severity ranking one level below the ranking that the underlying offense would be assigned under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

If convicted of Second Degree Felony Criminal Conspiracy, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to five (5) years in prison.
  • Up to five (5) years of probation.
  • Up to $5,000 in fines.

First Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy

First Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime to be committed is a Third Degree Felony with an offense severity ranking of 1 or 2 under Florida's Criminal Punishment Code.

First Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy is classified as a misdemeanor of the first degree. If convicted of First Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to one (1) year in jail.
  • Up to one (1) year of probation.
  • Up to $1,000 in fines.

Second Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy

Second Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy occurs when the underlying crime to be committed is First or Second Degree Misdemeanor.

Second Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy is classified as a misdemeanor of the second degree and if convicted of Second Degree Misdemeanor Criminal Conspiracy, a judge can impose any combination of the following penalties:

  • Up to sixty (60) days in jail.
  • Up to six (6) months of probation.
  • Up to $500 in fines.

Defenses to Criminal Conspiracy

In addition to the pretrial defenses and trial defenses that can be raised in any criminal case, a specific defense to the crime of criminal conspiracy is:

Abandonment

Abandonment, also referred to as withdrawal or renunciation, is a defense to the crime of criminal conspiracy.

To raise the defense of Abandonment, a conspirator must demonstrate a complete and voluntary renunciation of the criminal conspiracy and either have persuaded the other conspirators not to commit the intended crime or actually prevented the conspirators from preventing the intended crime (for example, by contacting the police). [2]

Contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Richard Hornsby

If you have been arrested or charged with the crime of Criminal Conspiracy in Central Florida or the Greater Orlando area, contact Criminal Defense Lawyer today.

The initial consultation is free and I am always available to advise you on the proper course of action that can be taken.

References

  1. Florida Statute 777.04(3)
  2. Florida Statute 777.04(5)(c)