In March 2000, Proposition 21 enacted two revisions to the California Penal Code that dramatically altered the identification and punishment of fringe-offenders. First, a defendant need not be a member to be charged as an active participant in a gang. Second, and most importantly, Proposition 21 enacted a conspiracy law allowing gang participants to be charged as co-conspirators for any crime a fellow gang member commits. Under this newly created conspiracy theory, a juvenile may now be sentenced for a gang-related crime in which he did not participate.
De Vries, Lizabeth N.
"Guilt By Association: Proposition 21's Gang Conspiracy Law Will Increase Youth. Violence in California,"
University of San Francisco Law Review: Vol. 37
, Article 8.
Available at: http://repository.usfca.edu/usflawreview/vol37/iss1/8