Facilitation in Arizona is a preparatory crime that is charged to individuals who have knowingly acted in a manner that provides another individual with the opportunity or ability to commit a crime. What that simply means is someone that helps another person commit a crime is a facilitator. While that individual actually committing the crime is charged with the crime, the facilitator is charged with facilitation under ARS 13-1004.
The most important point of facilitation charges is that the individual “knowingly” contributed to the crime by helping the other person who attempted or intended to commit the crime.
Prosecutors usually argue that ARS 13-1004 includes all activity used to commit a crime, such as providing another person with the tools or a vehicle to commit burglary.
Facilitation can often appear similar to conspiracy. But facilitation lacks the intricate planning of conspiracy and there may be no specific agreement between the individuals that the offense will be committed.
In many circumstances, the defendant agreed to help someone without realizing their intention to commit a crime. A defendant may be charged with the crime “after the fact.” This means that they provided assistance to a person who already committed a crime, such as in hiding tools or a vehicle used to commit a crime.
Regardless of how or why the alleged crime of facilitation was committed, it is very important that you gain the help of a criminal defense lawyer experienced in facilitation law as soon as you are aware of charges.
When one person commits a crime and asks another to help them in any manner to commit that crime or avoid getting caught committing the crime, it can be considered facilitation. Unlike conspiracy, facilitation is not generally premeditated or planned.
Some examples of facilitation include:
These acts of facilitation may occur without the facilitator having knowledge of a crime being committed. Lack of knowledge of the criminal offender’s activities or intent can be used to avoid facilitation charges.
Because facilitation is not planned or premeditated as an agreement to commit a crime, facilitation charges are generally considerably less severe than conspiracy. Facilitation may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony with the severity depending upon the other person’s committed crime.
Several strong defenses for facilitation in Arizona may be used. These defenses can be favorable for defendants, just as the facilitation charge carries less severe penalties when compared to conspiracy.
The primary approach is for the criminal defense attorney to attempt to prove that the defendant had no prior knowledge of the crime or the intent of another party to commit the crime and was innocent of facilitation. Duress is another defense, with the defendant being proven to have committed facilitation without a choice, due to fear of worse consequences.
Defense attorneys in facilitation cases can also argue Miranda rights violation and denial to right of counsel, as may be used in other cases. Forensic flaws can be argued and proven. Intimidation or coercion by law enforcement toward confession for the crime can also be used in defense.
DM Cantor is AV® rated with the highest possible rating by Martindale Hubbell® and highly experienced in facilitation defense. David Michael Cantor is a Certified Criminal Law Specialist per the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization. To schedule a free case review, please call our offices 24 hours a day at (602) 536-5730 or send a confidential email.
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