It is much more common to see people charged with the crime of conspiracy in federal courts than it is in Florida state courts. For those charged with conspiracy in Florida state courts, the prosecution has to prove two things:
- That the person intended that a certain crime be committed; and
- In order to carry out that intent, the person agreed with at least one other person to cause the crime to be committed either by both of them, or by one of them, or by some other person.
The prosecution does not have to prove, however, that a person charged with conspiracy actually participated in the object of the conspiracy. For example, the prosecution does not have to prove that a person charged with conspiring to rob a convenience store actually robbed the store himself. It is enough if he simply conspired with the actual robbers.
If a person is charged with conspiracy, one defense he may have is that he persuaded the other conspirators to not commit the object of the conspiracy or else helped to prevent the object of the conspiracy from occurring. To again use the example of a convenience store robbery, a person charged with conspiracy might be able to defend himself by arguing either that he persuaded the other conspirators to not commit the robbery, or else he prevented the other conspirators from actually robbing the store.
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