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Hammer O'Justice
Hammer O'Justice, Criminal Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 4502
Experience:  Almost 12 years of legal experience, primarily in criminal law
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I am a US citizen who is currently writing my memoirs. When

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I am a US citizen who is currently writing my memoirs. When I was a young man around 35 years ago, I knew some professional criminals overseas and was briefly involved in helping them plan a few potential capers - all overseas except for one in the US. NONE of these capers ever happened. They were theoretical discussions but not acted upon. No crimes were committed. If I publish these anecdotes in my book, could I be prosecuted?

Obviously the laws vary from country to country but it is unlikely that you would be prosecuted for anything. Generally, in the United States, to prove conspiracy to commit a crime, there has to be a mutual agreement that a crime is going to occur. Now, the crime doesn't actually have to occur to be convicted of conspiracy, but there has to be an agreement that a crime will be committed. A theoretical plan with no intended execution does not really qualify. Furthermore, in many instances even if a true conspiracy had occurred, the statute of limitations has likely run. Finally, a mere confession is not enough to convict someone...there has to be what is called a scintilla of corroboration of the confession. Since no crime actually occurred, it would be hard to corroborate any "confession" you make in your memoirs. As I said, the laws are different in other countries but it is unlikely that they would charge you and go to the trouble to extradite you for planning crimes that never occurred.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Could you please explain "scintilla of corroboration" is layman's terms. Also, out of curiosity what are is the statute of limitations in the US for conspiracy to commit a crime? Keep in mind this is for dabbling in plans for capers that were never committed or progressed beyond a theoretical discussion stage and took place 34 or 35 years ago.

Scintilla of corroboration means a barest hint of supporting proof. Say a murder was committed with a knife, and the police did not tell the general public what the weapon was, and a guy confesses to committing the murder with a knife. His knowledge of the weapon corroborates his confession.

The statute of limitations is different for every state and crime, but it is much shorter than 40 years for most crimes. In some places, murder and rape have no statute of limitations but most crimes do and they are far less than 30 years.
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