Criminal Law

Hybrid Legal Impossibility

Hybrid legal impossibility is when the defendant's goal is illegal but impossible due to the legal status of some factor relevant to his conduct.

Most jurisdictions do not allow hybrid legal impossibility as a defense.


  • Taking stolen property that turns out to not be stolen
  • Trying to bribe a juror when the person is not actually a juror
  • Trying to solicit an FBI agent posing as an underage girl in a chatroom
  • Trying to hire an undercover cop posing as a hitman