skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 210803 Find in a Library
Title: Federal Criminal Conspiracy
Journal: American Criminal Law Review  Volume:42  Issue:2  Dated:Spring 2005  Pages:463-495
Author(s): Kathy Diener; Teisha C. Johnson
Date Published: 2005
Page Count: 33
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes the elements of a conspiracy offense as well as available defenses to the charge and evidentiary and enforcement issues.
Abstract: Section 371 of Title 18 of the United States Code defines the crime of conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States or to defraud the United States. Following an introduction to the Federal offense in section 1, section 2 of the article reviews the basic elements of a conspiracy offense as they are defined in Section 371, which includes an agreement between at least two parties to achieve an illegal goal. Section 2 outlines the available defenses to a charge of conspiracy; the four main defenses are described as: (1) statute of limitations; (2) variance; (3) multiplicitous indictment; and (4) withdrawal. Section 4 discusses the co-conspirator exception to the hearsay rule, which allows co-conspirators to act as witnesses in trial, and section 5 explores the main enforcement issues relating to conspiracy offenses, which revolve around vicarious liability issues, joinder and severance decisions, and the acquittal of other co-conspirators. Finally, the United States Sentencing Guidelines pertaining to sentencing ranges for conspiracy convictions are reviewed. Footnotes
Main Term(s): Conspiracy; Laws and Statutes
Index Term(s): Federal legislation; Federal sentencing guidelines
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.