What are Conspiracy Charges in North Carolina and Why do You Need a Criminal Defense Lawyer?

Charlotte Criminal Lawyer Brad Smith answers the question: “Do I need to hire an attorney if I have been falsely accused?”


Conspiracy is defined as an agreement between two or more people to do something unlawful. What penalties can you face for “conspiring” in North Carolina? If you are planning to commit a crime in Charlotte or elsewhere in North Carolina, you can be charged with criminal conspiracy.

Criminal conspiracy is associated with misdemeanor and felony charges, depending on the facts surrounding your particular case. Since being convicted of conspiracy can be a life-altering event, it is vital to be represented by an experienced criminal defense lawyer in North Carolina.


plotting-Charlotte-Monroe-Lake-Norman-Criminal-Defense-Lawyer-300x225The Crime of Conspiracy in North Carolina

In North Carolina, a person can be charged with conspiracy if there is an agreement or plan by a group of people to commit a crime. In fact, you could face conspiracy charges if you are plotting to do something lawful through illegal conduct.

Under North Carolina’s state law, a prosecutor must establish the following three elements to convict a defendant of criminal conspiracy:

  • The defendant and at least one other person created a plan or agreement;
  • The plan or agreement was to commit a criminal act or do something through unlawful conduct; and
  • The defendant and their co-conspirators had the intent to commit a crime at the time of creating the plan or agreement.

A person could also be charged with a federal crime. To prove that the defendant conspired to defraud the United States requires the following three elements:

  • The conspiracy involved at least two people;
  • The conspirators had an intent to commit any offense against the country; or
  • The intent was to defraud the country or any government agency.


Conspiracy Charges in North Carolina

There are different types of conspiracy charges in North Carolina that depend on the underlying offense:

  • Conspiracy to defraud a person or entity
  • Conspiracy to commit burglary or robbery
  • Conspiracy to obstruct justice
  • Conspiracy to commit assault or murder
  • Conspiracy to sell illegal substances or commit other drug crimes


How can a North Carolina Criminal Defense Attorney Help?

As with any other criminal charges, it is important to seek legal help from a skilled criminal defense attorney to help you challenge the charges against you. A North Carolina criminal defense lawyer can help you by:

  • Defending the conspiracy charge. An experienced attorney may be able to challenge the finding that you conspired to commit a crime, contest the existence of a secret plan to do something unlawful, or disprove that you had the intent to commit a crime.
  • Defending the underlying offense. You could be charged with committing the underlying offense and the conspiracy to commit that crime. If you were arrested for a crime and the conspiracy to commit the crime, your lawyer could help you defend the underlying criminal charge.

In North Carolina, a prosecutor must prove that you were guilty of conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt, which can be difficult if you are being accused of conspiracy. A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney on your side can help you choose the most efficient course of action to avoid or minimize criminal penalties.

Speak with our criminal defense attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, to receive a case evaluation. Do not hesitate to call if you are under investigation for conspiracy charges. Call our lawyers at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, at (704) 370-2828 to evaluate your options or fill out our contact form. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.







The criminal defense attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC make it their mission to zealously defend their clients on a wide range of criminal matters at both the state and federal levels. These matters may include any charge from traffic offenses; DWI/DUI; drug charges (from simple possession to possession with intent to distribute and trafficking); gun permit denials; weapons offenses; and property crimes (larceny, breaking and entering, robbery, fraud, embezzlement, white collar offenses); to sexually related offenses (indecent exposure; sexual assault, crimes against nature, removal from sex offender registry); and violent crimes (domestic violence; assault; manslaughter; homicide, murder). Other legal issues that Arnold & Smith, PLLC criminal clients may be facing include restraining orders, restraining order and probation violations, expungements; appeals; and immigration issues related to criminal charges. Our criminal defense attorneys are passionate about ensuring that individuals empower themselves by being informed about their constitutional rights, and stand at the ready to fight in the defense of those facing criminal charges.






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