Inchoate crimes are crimes that involve activities that lead up to the committing of another crime. Conspiracy is one type of an inchoate crime. Criminal conspiracy refers to two or more people coming together and planning to engage in criminal activity. An example of conspiracy would be agreeing to abduct a child.
Is It a Crime in Texas to Agree to Abduct a Child from Someone's Custody?
Yes. The state has a law prohibiting this called “agreement to abduct from custody.” According to the law, a person is guilty if they promise or agree to abduct a minor younger than 18 years old from custody of another or two or more people conspire to kidnap the minor.
What Does the State Need to Prove to Convict Me of the Crime?
The state has to prove the person:
- Agreed for money or the promise of money
- To abduct a minor under the age of 18 years old
- By force, misrepresentation, threat of force, unlawful entry, stealth
- From the legal caretaker’s custody
Is This Crime the Same as Parental Kidnapping?
No, it is not parental kidnapping. The crime of parental kidnapping occurs when a person abducts a minor. The person conducting the kidnapping is either a parent or family member. There is no agreement prior to the kidnapping.
Is It Illegal to Agree to Abduct a Minor If I Am Giving Physical Custody Back to a Parent?
Any parent who has lawful custody of a child does not need to resort to abducting their child to get the child back. Generally speaking, the only parent who would conspire or ask someone to kidnap their child is a non-custodial parent. Thus, agreeing to abduct a child with the intent on giving the child to the parent is still illegal since child is not supposed to be with the parent.
What Is the Punishment for Agreeing to Abduct a Child?
Agreeing to abduct a child is a state jail felony. This felony is punishable by:
- 180 days to two years in state jail
- $10,000 fine
- Both a fine and state jail time
Should I Contact an Attorney?
Agreeing to abduct a child is a serious crime. If you are facing a charge for agreeing to abduct a child, you need to contact a Texas attorney. You need to know your legal rights and all defenses to resolve your case.