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Voluntary Abandonment Defense in Conspiracy Cases

“Voluntary Abandonment” is a defense to any conspiracy charge under Florida law. The defense of “voluntary abandonment” occurs when a defendant renounces a plan to commit a criminal act, and communicates the fact that he has renounced the plan to commit the criminal act to the co-conspirators at a time when the co-conspirators also have sufficient time to abandon the plan.

When the criminal defense attorney raises the defense of voluntary abandonment, the prosecutor usually argues that the abandonment was not “voluntary” by showing that the abandonment occurred only because of some unexpected difficulty in executing the plan to commit the criminal act.

Florida Section 777.04(5)(a) for the Abandonment Defense

Section 777.04(5)(a), Florida Statutes (2004), establishes a statutory abandonment defense, providing:

“It is a defense to a charge of criminal attempt, … that, under circumstances manifesting a complete and voluntary renunciation of his or her criminal purpose, the defendant:

(a) [a]bandoned his or her attempt to commit the offense or otherwise prevented its commission.”

See McClover v. State, _____ (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. May 15, 2013).

Defense Attorneys for Conspiracy Cases

The criminal defense attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm represent individuals charged with conspiracy. Contact our offices to speak with an attorney about criminal conspiracy and the “voluntary abandonment” defense.

We represent individuals charged with conspiracy crimes under Florida law and under Federal law throughout the Tampa Bay area including in Tampa for Hillsborough County and in Clearwater for Pinellas County, and in the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division.

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