Tar Valon Laws

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General Overview

All citizens are expected to be aware of the laws governing the city. Guests and visitors of the city are given some lienency, though ignorance of the laws is not a defense that will be taken kindly within Tar Valoner courts. Those people entering the city and the territories surrounding the city are expected to follow the same laws governing social and criminal conduct within the city of Tar Valon.

Committing Crimes

Those people suspected of breaking the law within Tar Valon will be appreheanded and held within the city jail while pending a criminal investigation. The "accused" will be offered the opportunity to take counsel, which can be either provided for through their own coffers, or in the case of those less fortunate through a court appointed case worker. Depending on the crime, the "accused" may or may not be released until the trial, and may be asked into questioning as many times as needed to get facts straightened out for their particular case.

Trials

Trials are held in almost every circumstance where a crime is involved. This gives the "accused" an opportunity to prove their innocense in a case against them, as well as the prosecution a chance to investigate the matters to their fullest ability. In high politic situations, such as cases of 'High Treason' the case is referred to the White Tower to be tried in 'Traitor's Court', which is presided over by the Amyrlin Seat.

Criminal trials held within the city are presided over by at least three magistrates, who confer with one another and make a decision based on the facts presented to them. There is a High Magistrate who officially announces all of the decisions of the court to the populace attending the hearing. The other two Magistrates, who sit on either side of him, may act as 'Seats of Rebuttal' for either the prosecution or the defense. However, their main job is to see that the case has as fair an outcome as possible, conferring with the High Magistrate to provide a final outcome to the events presented.

All decisions of the court are presented as final. However, if there is enough evidence provided to overturn a decision, the Magistrates may confer once more and decide whether or not another trial may be in order, or if their decision was in err. The evidence must be enough that the Magistrates have no other choice but to refute their earlier decision based on the facts of the case. The defendant and the plaintiff may be called once more to stand before the Magistrates and give testimony if the evidence and testimony seem unclear.

The court may appoint an 'attourney' to act as the prosecution for the city. This appointee is responsible for making certain to get as many facts as possible to help aid the case against the defendant/accused. This person is expected to make certain the evidence is properly presented to the court, and that all things are presented in a legal manner. If evidence is obtained in a faulty manner, or misleads the court, the attourney may be responsible for punative damages against the defendant, especially in cases where the evidence actually points to the person's innocence and they are wrongfully sentenced.

The defendant is entitled to counsel, if they so wish. In cases of those who are financially unable to provide counsel for themselves, the court will appoint a public defender. This person is responsible for getting as many facts as possible from the defendant, to better aid their case and prove their innocense. This person is also responsible for making certain all facts presented are presented in a legal manner. If evidence is obtained in a faulty manner, or misleads the court, the 'attourney' may be responsible for punative damages against the court, especially in cases where the evidence is fraudulent and allows a truly guilty person to go free.

Explanation of Laws

The following is an outline of laws within the city of Tar Valon. Please make certain to review these carefully before deciding to role-play a crime within the city.

Anyone accused of any serious crime will be detained by the Tower Guard, pending a full investigation, and will be assigned a representative to defend their case. The Tar Valon City Council will meet and a trial will be held.. All decisions of the City Council in legal matters are final and may not be appealed.

Players within Tar Valon should be familiar with the laws goverened within the city.

Aiding

One who hides a criminal, evidence of a crime, withholds information or does not come forward with known information, lies, falsifies information or statements is considered to be aiding and abeting whatever crime has been done. Examples of this would be assisting a person hunted by the law to evade capture by suggesting places to hide, hiding or keeping evidence or loot for them, keeping secrets of persons seeking to defraud others. Generally one is expected to report in confidentiality suspicious activities and suspicions to the guards. This does not fall under slander or libel since such reports are private and sealed unless malicious and recurrent.

Punishment:

The severity of this can vary with the crime but generally one who aids and abets in a crime is equally guilty as the criminal and subject to just as harsh a punishment. This can include fines, servitude, branding, physical punishment, imprisonment (long or short term), seizure of property and exile.

Assault

Assault and battery is the intentional act to injure another person or party in an attempt or threat to do bodily harm. This includes, but is not limited to, beating, brawling, hitting, punching, dueling or any other means of doing bodily harm or injury to another person.

In cases of domestic violence, charges may be brought against one's husband and/or wife, mother and/or father, and the issue will be looked into as if it were a normal case of assault and battery. While family is a thing of value and importance, the safety of all within Tar Valon is respected.

Punishment:

The penalties for being caught harming or attempting to harm another person are stiff. These may included, but are not limited to one or more of the following: fines, servitude, physical punishment, branding, exile or imprisonment (long or short term).'

Duels

Tar Valon, while a city of honor, does not believe that duels are a means to settle problems or disputes amongst its people, or visiting members. Therefore, the act of settling a dispute through the use of swords or other weapons is prohibited. Deaths caused by the result of a duel will be treated as an act of murder. Injuries caused by the result of a duel will be treated as a case of assault and battery.

Punishment:

The pentalties for being caught in a duel will depend on the exact circumstances of the impending case. If no injuries were acquired between either party, then both members are subject to one or more of the following: fines, servitude, and/or imprisonment (long or short term).

If injury or death was an impending result of the duel, then the offending party will serve the same punishments for assault and battery or murder, depending on the severity of the case. If both parties survive, the uninjured party will be subject to one or more of these punishments: fines, servitude, and/or imprisonment (long or short term). Neither party within the duel, no matter the circumstances surrounding it, will walk out clean.

Fraud

Fraud is the willful act of swindling people from their money or possessions through seemingly legal means. Examples of this include: fixed gambling, get rich quick schemes for only X amount of coins, proclaiming to sell 'artifacts' when they are fakes, counterfeiting, etc.

Punishment:

Those caught in an act of fraud will find themselves facing one or more of these penalties: fines, servitude, and/or imprisonment (long or short term).

Kidnapping

Kidnapping is act of forcibly removing and/or confining another away from their family and home, against their will, is prohibited. The exceptions to this are when a parent sends their child to their room, or when the Tower Guard detains another accused of committing a crime. Sometimes a ransom is demanded for the safe return of the person taken against their will.

Punishment:

The punishment for kidnapping will depend on the various circumstances surrounding the act within itself - the kidnapping, conditions of confinement, etc. If the person comes out injured or unharmed, then they will be subject to one or more of the following punishments: fines, physical punishment, branding, exile, and/or imprisonment (long or short term).

If the victim was injured or harmed in anyway, the offender will be charged additionally for assault and battery, and be set with punishments under that category on top those for kidnapping.

If the victim was killed or murdered as a result of the kidnapping, then the offender will be charged additionally with murder, and be set with punishments under that category on top those for kidnapping.

Manslaughter

Manslauter is the taking of another life through accidental means. This includes, but is not limited to, running down a person walking across the street (with a horse, wagon, carriage, etc.), accidentally killing someone in a fight or brawl, accidentally bumping into someone on their way downstairs, causing them to fall, and so on.

Punishment:

Because the act of manslaughter needs to be investigated so thoroughly to ensure that the deaths were really accidental, punishments could range from one or more of these things things: fines, imprisonment (long or short term), servitude, physical punishment, exile, and/or branding. Should the crime be deemed pre-meditated, then the punishments associated with murder would be used instead.

Murder

Murder is defined as taking the life of another through willful means. This includes, but is not limited to, planned deaths, self-defense, crimes of passion, intended and/or unintended victims to crimes of happenstance - arsen or sabotage.

Punishment:

Penalties for taking a human life are harsh indeed, especially within the city of Tar Valon. Because there are varying degrees and differences in the types of murder that can be performed, there are varying punishments to fit the crime.

Pre-meditated (planned) murder, crimes of passion, and crimes of happenstance (intended or unintended victims of arsen, sabotage, etc) are all crimes which garner the stiffest penalties of all. These crimes are all considered to have been planned, at least partially, in advance in order to end the life of another. Punishments for this particular crime include any, or a combination of: fines, physical punishment, branding, exile, execution, or imprisonment (long or short term).

Self-defense is considered an act of protecting oneself against the onslaught of another. Cases of self-defense are given more liencey than those of pre-meditated murder, and so forth. Punishments for this particular crime may include any, or a combination of: fines, physical punishment, or short-term imprisonment.

Rape

Rape, or the act of forcing sexual activity on another, is something that members of Tar Valon or the City Council will not tolerate. While we recognize that those types of actions /may/ actually happen within the city, rape is prohibited within Tar Valon. OOCly, any plots surrounding acts of rape or sexual violence will neither be approved nor considered. People are on the game to enjoy their RP, and this type of RP is rather insensitive to those who've had to experience it first hand within their own lives.

Punishment:

Just for the purposes of posting this, the penalty for forcing oneself on another sexually is rather strict and stiff, nor will any mercy be granted to anyone who has committed such an act. Punishments for this crime may include: exile, branding, execution, fines, long-term imprisonment, servitude, or a selection of several punishments at once.

Reputation

A reputation of a person is considered their most prized possession. They are due the reputation they have earned. Slander is making false verbal comments that injure a reputation. Libel is publishing or writing these falsehoods down. Examples of this would be saying an honest merchant is a thief, that a woman has ben unfaithful to her husband or an innocent woman has been overly familiar with many men, that a guard has been sleeping at his post or accepted bribes. If _proof_ of such allegations is provided, no slander or libel exists.

Punishment:

These can include fines, punitive reparations to the injured party, public apology and acknowledgement of lies, branding, imprisonment, or exile.

Tax Evasion

Tax evasion is the failure to pay taxes set upon commerce and population within the jurisdiction of Tar Valon. It includes traders and peddlars of other lands as well as resident population. Rates are set by the city council and funds are used for intrastructure upkeep, security, disaster relief, maintenance of government structures, the public orphanage, and similar purposes.

Punishment:

Penalties include fines, punative seizing of property, servitude, imprisonment (long or short term), branding and exile.

Theft

Theft is the act of depriving a person of their property through shady means, or the act of taking another person's property without their permission. Fencing is the act of selling stolen goods, either through the black market, general market, or to other interested parties.

Punishment:

Both of these actions are crimes in and of themselves, and are treated with stiff penalties. Those caught stealing or fencing goods may find themselves dealing with one or more penalties, such as: fines, servitude, branding, and/or imprisonment (long or short term).

Treason

The act of consorting with others to overthrow the government, causing intentional injury to the Amyrlin, Keeper of the Chronicles, or members of the Tar Valon City Council, or giving away City secrets without prior consent of any of the above, is an act of treason. Treason is one of the worst crimes that can be commited within the city of Tar Valon, and will be treated as such.

Punishment:

The penalty for committing treason is rather strict and stiff, nor will mercy be granted to the person that has committed such an act. Punishments for this crime may include a variety of results: exile, branding, execution, long-term imprisonment, or a selection of several punishments at once.

Explanation of Punishments

The following is an outline of punishments within the city of Tar Valon. Please make certain to review these carefully before deciding to role-play a crime within the city.

Anyone accused of any serious crime will be detained by the Tower Guard, pending a full investigation, and will be assigned a representative to defend their case. The Tar Valon City Council will meet and a trial will be held.. All decisions of the City Council in legal matters are final and may not be appealed.

Players within Tar Valon should be familiar with the laws and punishments goverened within the city.

Branding

Branding is a physical punishment which gives visible marks of a convicted criminal's nature. This is done by pressing a hot iron against bare skin, leaving behind a permanent scar. This form of punishment may be combined with others. The mark is usually placed somehwere on the face or hands so it can't be hidden.

Examples:

           Dragon's Fang - Convicted Darkfriend
                                  X - Convicted Thief
    Flame of Tar Valon - Treason to the Tower or Tar Valon

We are looking for additional ideas for branding codes. Any submissions will be welcome and appreciated.

Execution

Execution is a death sentence that can take many forms: beheading, hanging, impaling, etc. Usually, those sentenced to die are killed quickly. Suffering and torture are not applied normally, however there are always exceptions.

Execution can be sentenced for any crime, no matter how inoffensive or petty. However, becaues the severity of the punishment causes a player to permenantly lose their character, it should only be reserved for the most serious of offenses; murder, treason, etc... Graphical forms of execution may not always be suited for roleplay, IE: drawing and quartering, severing limbs, etc. because of their sensitive nature.

The Tar Valon Staff will work with any players who are sentenced to die to find other ways to get involved in the city with a new character concept.

Exile

A person who is exiled is required to leave their community or country for a pre-determined mount of time; which could range from a few weeks or months or until the rest of their life. Some offenders who are exiled from their community or country are often times considered 'dead' even to thier friends or family.

For a character, this would be a more devastating punishment for more anti-social crimes, as it isolates them from all they know and love. This type of punishment can be rendered for some of the more serious crimes, such as murder, but still leave a player with the opportunity ti roleplay their character. However, this punishment may not always be used in lieu of execution it is strongly advised.

Fines

Fines are a monetary fee or a seizure of property if a person cannot pay right away, providing restitution to a wronged person or victim. The fines helped pay for damages, court fees, or any other costs that came about because of the criminal's activity. This form of punishment can be used for all forms of crime.

Imprisonment

Imprisonment is the confining of a person in a dungeon, jail, etc, away from society, and may often times be accompanied by a fine or fee for living and court expenses.

Long Term:
Long term imprisonment would be a sentence of confinement for several OOC months. As with execution, long term imprisonment will be carefully considered, as it keeps a player away from RP and rendering the character unplayable. This punishment should be used for major crimes.

Short Term:
Short term imprisonment would be a sentence of confinement for a single day to four months (an OOC month). Short term imprisonment is best used for minor or petty offenses. Since this type of punishment punishes the player more than the character, it is best to limit the confinement to a few RL days. Players are welcome to start a new character or use a puppet during their confinement. Visitation rights will be dependant on the crime commited.

Physical Punishment

Physical punishments can be useful for a variety of offenses, no matter how big or small. Flogging or being placed in the stockade are the msot common physical punishments for pettty crimes. However, there can be harsher punishments, such as: amputation, blinding, hamstringing, being subjected to the pulley or the rack, placed in the stocks, or other means of creative torture.

Physical punishment is most often incurred for serious crimes that are not financially associated, however may be used in conjunction with or in lieu of a fnie or fee. These sorts of punishments have a lasting effect on the character. Players may opt to 'fade to black' the more grotesque punishments if they are unfortable with this type of roleplay. If they choose to 'fade to black' they are expected to RP as though the character was punished for the crime.

Servitude

Servitude allows a person to work off thier debt without threat of physical punishment if they are unable to pay the fines and/or fees incurred from damaging property or stealing goods. This sort of punishment may be used in conjunction with the others, however. Those within the service of the offended may find themselves imprisoned overnight to make certain they do not escape, or wear some sort of indentification marker.

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