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Defense for Defendants Charged With Criminal Conspiracy

To be found guilty of engaging in organized crime, the prosecution must prove a group of three or more people have worked together to commit one or more ongoing criminal offenses. Several people working together to steal and resell cars, launder money, or set up a drug distribution network would all be considered organized crime. The following is list of possible offenses:

Engaging in organized crime usually results in far harsher penalties than if one person was charged with the original offenses. If you have been charged with engaging in organized crime, it is imperative that you seek a reputable defense attorney.

Samuel M. Gardner is a proven Houston organized crime lawyer who has represented several clients charged with offenses. Call (713) 448-0303 to schedule an appointment.

Defining Organized Crime

For the prosecution to prove participation in organized crime, the state must prove intent on the part of the defendants and connect their actions to the crime. Organized crime is punishable based on the original crime raised one category. For example, if a crime is punishable as a third-degree felony, then all members that participated in the organized crime will be charged with second-degree felonies.

Organized crime can typically be infiltrated by state or government agents. Most organized crime groups have a pyramid or corporate formation. The higher up the ladder a member of the group is, the more money they make and the more influence they typically have. Most crime groups utilize threats, aggression, extortion, and other aggravated crimes to continue their criminal activities.

Proving the Existence of Organized Crime

The prosecution can have a difficult time proving organized crime. It is their responsibility to prove the group has a shared intent to commit multiple acts of crime. Even if the individual crimes can be traced back to each group member, the prosecution must prove combination, continuity, and that the group is wholly criminal.:

  • Combination is when three or more individuals carry out specific crimes over an extended period of time for a net benefit. The benefit is most easily traced to profit, though territory control and other ancillary motivations may be proven.
  • Continuity is when a group repeatedly employ criminal methods for financial gain.
  • Wholly criminal can only be proven if the whole group is engaged in criminal intent. If four people are involved in organized crime but two of the group’s members are undercover detectives, then combination is not proven, and the charges will not be levied as participation in organized crime.

One final note: the defendant can be indicted for engaging in organized crime and the crime itself. Most Texas trials will charge the defendant for both.

Organized crime charges add further penalties to the original crime committed. Contact Samuel M. Gardner Attorney at Law for skilled criminal defense counsel in Houston.


Take a look at our results.
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