With apologies: I was in a rush when typing out the update below, and just added to the confusion. Here’s the bottom line, as more than a few listmembers have written in to clarify (thanks folks!):
New York follows the unilateral approach to conspiracy liability. You do have to have more than one person involved on this model; it’s just that it is possible for liability to attach even if the other “party” to the agreement turns out to be a confidential informant, as seems likely to be the situation in this case based on the charging document. My apologies for muddying the water on this earlier!
From: Robert Chesney [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, November 21, 2011 5:17 PM
Subject: [nationalsecuritylaw] update: New York v. Jose Pimentel (Criminal Court of the City of New York)
Strike my comments on conspiracy law – turns out that in New York state law, you need not have multiple participants to have a conspiracy, as you would in federal law. My bad, sorry for the confusion.
From: Robert Chesney [mailto:rchesney
Sent: Monday, November 21, 2011 4:16 PM
Subject: [nationalsecuritylaw] New York v. Jose Pimentel (Criminal Court of the City of New York)
* New York v. Jose Pimentel (Criminal Court of the City of New York)
The criminal complaint laying out the charges is here, along with an affidavit summarizing the basis for the arrest. I’ve posted a brief summary of the charges and a few comments here. The most interesting thing about the charges themselves is the fact that there are two conspiracy counts, though the case has been talked about in lone wolf terms. There also is a very interesting count in the nature of self-provision of material support.