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A guide to federal drug conspiracy charges

The federal government takes drug charges seriously. The feds will often pursue federal drug conspiracy charges to enhance the potentially harsh consequences of a criminal charge. It is important to know how the government defines a “conspiracy” and how you can help build a defense against these types of allegations.

What is a conspiracy?

A conspiracy does not have to mean a group of people meeting in a dark alleyway to plot a crime. To show a conspiracy exists, the government must prove that two or more parties agreed to work toward a common goal. A conversation over a cup of coffee, a phone call, or an email can be enough to make a case for a conspiracy.

Did you intend to enter into the agreement?

A common defense against conspiracy charges is that you never intended to enter into the agreement. There is nothing illegal about talking about a plan to distribute drugs. You will have to take additional, proactive steps to help further the plan to distribute drugs.

If you do happen to take steps to further the conspiracy, you may show that you tried to remove yourself from the plan at some point. Similar to intending to enter into an agreement, you must take proactive steps to take yourself out of the plan. Merely opting out is not a strong enough defense to conspiracy charges.

A note about entrapment

People often misunderstand the concept of entrapment. They believe that anytime an undercover government agent enlists someone to break the law, entrapment must have occurred. However, to successfully claim entrapment, you must show that you would never have broken the law except for actions taken by the government agent. Merely being presented with the chance to distribute drugs and taking the opportunity to do so is probably not entrapment.

You can build a defense against conspiracy charges

It is important to remember that you have rights. There are several potential defenses to federal drug charges. Discussing your case with a skilled professional can help you understand your options.

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