A will do anything to make some quick cash. To that end, he researches get-rich-quick schemes on the Internet. While browsing, he stumbles on a large artifact-selling ring, which buys and sells legally protected historical artifacts for hefty sums. The main webpage shows a cartoon pirate under the caption, “Legal shmeegal, sell us your buried treasure.”
A is intrigued, but he does not want to hunt for treasures and do all that digging alone. So, he calls his buddy B and asks B to help him dig up legally protected artifacts and sell them online. B says “Sure.”A then calls another friend of his, C, with the same proposal, except that A omits to tell C that the artifacts will be sold online. C also agrees to help. A, B, and C then agree to meet at an ancient burial ground to find artifacts, operating as Team #1.
A, to hedge his bets, also calls D and E and asks them to conduct a separate digging operation at a different burial site, operating as Team #2. A tells B, C, D, and E that there will be two digging operations conducted by two different teams. Except for A, the members of neither team know the identities of the other team’s members.
On the agreed date and time, A and C show up at the burial ground and start digging. D and E also begin their digging operation on the separate site. In advance of the dig, B calls A to tell A that he changed his mind and no longer wants to be a part of the operation. B fails to show up to participate in the dig.
In a Model Penal Code jurisdiction, A, B, C, D, and E are charged with conspiracy to “knowingly sell protected artifacts,” which is a third-degree felony. Assume the prosecution can prove the above facts at trial.
- Are A, B, C, D, and E liable for conspiracy to sell protected artifacts? Explain, applying only the Model Penal Code, but do not analyze the defendants’ liability for any other crime.