Generally, there are more state level criminal charges in Florida than there are federal criminal charges. Most of the time, federal charges involve crimes that affect people in more than one state and generally involve more serious offenses.
People may have heard of federal criminal charges such as mail fraud, wire fraud or conspiracy charges. However, they may not understand what they mean exactly or why some defendants are charged with these offenses in federal courts.
Basics of conspiracy charges
Conspiracy charges are secondary to another offense, such as conspiracy to commit wire fraud. At a very basic level, conspiracy means that more than one person participates in committing a crime.
This could mean that two or more people were involved in planning the crime, helping further the plan in some capacity or were actively involved in committing the acts of a crime.
All people involved in the crime in any capacity may face conspiracy charges in addition to any charges they may face involving the primary criminal act. Even if the people were caught before they actually committed the crime, the authorities could still charge them with conspiracy for planning the crime.
The consequences for conspiracy convictions depend on many different factors. These include the severity of the criminal act and whether it was actually carried out. In some situations, defendants can face the same consequences for the conspiracy charge as they would receive for being the one to actually commit the crime.
Federal charges in Florida are generally serious and defendants may be sentenced to prison if convicted. Federal charges can also be more complicated given the nature of the offenses.
It is important that people understand their rights and the potential defenses available to them. Experienced attorneys understand federal charges and may be able to guide one through the process.