Laws, crime and punishment

Legislative Laws

Important note

Some of the following will mention “unit(s)”. One unit is the equivalent of either;
  • 100 gp in gold, gems or magic items
  • 1 day imprisonment

Payment per unit reduces the sentence for imprisonment.

An official acting on behalf of the crown may subject any ruling to require payment upfront.

Any inability to do so may result in permanent detainment in a corrections facility until the debt can be resolved. In such cases irrespective of time served, detainment and forfeiture of rights is conducted until debt is resolved. An appeal may be granted by wardens or marshals of a prison, whose request will then be brought before the honorable one more

Arson

Setting fire to the crowns property, or any property within the city or a towns limits is illegal.

Punishment:
  • Hard labour to repay the damage for buildings not entirely destroyed
  • 500 gp fine per building destroyed. A building is considered one story. A two story building would cost 1000 gp, plus two time units per building destroyed.
  • Property or personal assets may be seized or confiscated to offset fines.
  • Any damage valued over 15,000 gp results in a the castration of the individual by a magical curse
  • exile for life by the convicted individual
  • lengthy imprisonment
  • Any damage over 100,000 gp results in capital punishment, with the arsonist to be condemned to death by burning alive on a pyre of fire.

Assault, Negligible

Putting a person in imminent fear of personal bodily harm. Common examples include threats to officials of the law.

Penalty:
  • a 10-60 sp spot fine, dependent upon severity
  • failure to produce the funds results in a public flogging

Assault, Unprovoked

Violent crimes in which the offender has no intention to kill the victim or cause lasting harm. These attacks are often the result of bigotry, bullying, or petty cruelty. Common examples include muggings or picking a drunken brawl.

Penalty:
  • a spot fine in the amount of 50-100 sp, dependent upon severity
  • failure to produce the coin may result in imprisonment
  • failure to produce the coin may result in time in the stocks, up to seven days
  • establishment owners affected may request a ban or edict against individuals returning to their establishment; bans are rarely to be enforced unless nobility, royalty or a crown official is injured in the assault such as a foreign diplomat

Assault, Grievous

An attack in which the offender intentionally causes lasting harm to the victim. The offender typically has no concern for the victim’s life. Common examples include vicious beatings and attempted murder.

Penalty:
  • imprisonment/incarceration of one day to a month
  • attempted convicted murderers maybe branded with a hot iron sigils of ‘Untrustworthy’ on the face
  • attempted convicted murderers maybe branded with a mark of justice (see spell section below) to refrain from further actions against an individual victim

Banditry

Waylaying travellers or merchants and forcibly relieving them of their possessions.

Penalty:
  • loss of all carried possessions when apprehended and the seizure of all assets forfeited to the crown.
  • the additional sentence of 1 unit per 100gp of goods taken.
  • repeat offenders will forfeit the tools they use when committing acts of banditry
  • spell casters: hands, tongue
  • melee combatants: hands, eyes
  • range combatants: index, ring and middle fingers

Battery

Striking another in an offensive or harmful manner. Common examples include striking a child or woman in anger. Battery is only to be generally enforced for severe attacks against the crowns officials, nobles or the aristocracy

Penalty:
  • 500-10,000 sp fine, or
  • imprisonment of a few days
  • any crowns official, noblemen or aristocrat may request a limb as recompense
  • any such requests will be independently reviewed
  • nose, hand, eyes, fingers, ears, hair (burnt off leaving a scar), genitals or tongue

Unlawful Bearing of Arms

Certain circumstance create situations where it is illegal to carry weapons openly or conceal. When appropriated, and the ordinary citizens should be aware of the illegal bearing of arms, violation of this posted ordinance is a violation of the law.

Penalty:
  • the confiscation of the weapon, and , or
  • fines between 25-250 gp per weapon in violation of the restriction
  • pillory or public flogging

Betrayal, Major

Betrayals include the breaking of trust or of a promise. Breaking a holy vow, however, is considered an unholy act and is detailed under oath breaking. To be considered a major betrayal, the act must result in lasting harm or death to the betrayed victim. Examples can include a traitorous guard selling the defense plans of his master to assassins, or a merchant reneging on a major contract, bankrupting his business partner’s family.

Penalty:
  • Mutilation or permanent disfigurement
  • a curse bestowed
  • subject to a geas quest to compensate those whom are victims
  • loss of a limb by dagger or axe
  • nose, hand, eyes, fingers, ears, hair (burnt off leaving a scar), genitals or tongue

Betrayal, Minor

A minor betrayal results in minor but lasting effects for the betrayed party. Common examples include breaking up a happy marriage or acts of public humiliation.

Penalty:
  • public beating by lash, club or fist undertaken by the victim or chosen champion acting on victim’s behalf.

Blackmail

Blackmailing an Ustalavic crown official or part of the nobility is a serious crime.

Penalty:
  • 5-25 units for an ordinary citizen
  • 10-60 units for an official
  • 20-100 units for a member of the nobility
  • 5-50 days hard labour for less serious crimes

Blasphemy

An irreverent act or utterance against the nobility.

Penalty:
  • flogging of no less then 10 lashes

Bribery of a Crown Official

Offering a public official valuables, to which he would not otherwise be entitled I exchange for services

Penalty:
  • 1,000 -60,000 sp, and
  • a public flogging of 15 lashes, Or
  • 15 units for more serious crimes

Burglary

Pilfering goods from an unoccupied residence, store or government building

Penalty (dependent upon location): private residence/store of a non aristocrat/noble
  • confiscation of all carried goods, and
  • loss of 3 to 26 units, or
  • a fine of triple the appraised value of the goods stolen, or
  • the loss of a finger or toe
private residence/store of an aristocrat/noble
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and loss of 7 to 40 units, or
  • the loss of a hand or foot
government establishment
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and
  • loss of 7 to 40 units, and
  • the loss of a hand or foot
temple (as per the request of the affected temple), usually:
  • hard labour
  • beating
  • curse
  • torture for 1 month and upwards

Civil disturbance

Causing trouble in a public place.

Penalty:
  • 10-25 sp fine, or
  • a night in jail, or
  • an afternoon on the pillory, or
  • public flogging, equivalent to 5 lashes

Creation of harmful / illegal magical devices

The Quarterfaux Archives of Caliphas judges this very strictly and the term harmful is always interpreted in the Acadamaes favour (see below). Each nation may uses there own rules regarding this laws discernment.

Penalty:
  • confiscation of the item created, or
  • destruction of the item created, or
  • a dire warning on the perpetrator, or
  • the confiscation of personal spell book, or
  • perpetrator afflicted with spell blight, or
  • exile from nation

Destruction of Crown property

The intentional destruction of public or private property. The punishment for this is based completely on the amount of destruction and the location of the same.

Penalty:
  • fine equal to the repair cost, and
  • an additional unit per 1,000 gp damage done

Embezzlement of Crown Funds

The illegal procurement of coin, entitled to the crown, for personal use.

Penalty (dependent upon amount embezzled): 100 – 999 gp
  • confiscation of all carried goods, and
  • 3 to 26 units, or
  • a fine of triple the appraised value of the goods stolen, or
  • the loss of a finger or toe
1,000 – 9,999 gp
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and
  • 7 to 40 units, or
  • the loss of a hand or foot
10,000 – 49,999 gp
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and
  • 7 to 40 units, and
  • the loss of a hand or foot
50,000 – upwards gp
  • death by capital punishment (usually stoning)

Extortion

Extortion is the criminal act of using the threat of violence to coerce others into giving you something that rightfully belongs to them, or obeying your commands. It involves obtaining goods, service or money through violence or threats. Common examples include blackmail, armed robbery, and taking hostages.

Penalty (dependent upon amount embezzled, goods, money and services):

100 – 999 gp (tier 1)
  • confiscation of all carried goods, and
  • 3 to 26 units, or
  • a fine of triple the appraised value of the goods stolen, or
  • the loss of a finger or toe
1,000 – 9,999 gp (tier 2)
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and
  • 7 to 40 units, or
  • the loss of a hand or foot
10,000 – 49,999 gp (tier 3)
  • confiscation of all carried goods and assets owned, and
  • 7 to 40 units, and
  • the loss of a hand or foot
50,000 – upwards gp (tier 4)
  • death by capital punishment

Hostages: the use hostages automatically increases the sentence by one tier

Blackmail: increase the imprisonment time by 7 -10 days

Armed Robbery: increase the imprisonment time by 7 -10 days

Forgery

Trying to pass your own coins or passing counterfeits. This is applicable to forged documents of the crown. Common examples include counterfeiting coins, the creation and sale of fraudulent documents, duplication and abuse of noble seals.

Penalty:

Counterfeit coins or fraudulent documents
  • Public flogging, beating or pillory, or
  • Confiscation of all possessions, or
  • Imprisonment up to 3 years, or
  • fines, up to 50,000 gp
duplication and abuse of noble seals
  • disfigurement (any), or
  • mutilation (any), or
  • torture up to five years, or
  • capital punishment by hanging, pyre of fire, drowning, lynched and quartered or beheading.
  • Capital punishment chosen by nobleman whose identity was abused (The nobleman whose identity was abused can also choose to reduce the sentence).

Fraud against the Crown

Deliberate deceit, an act of deception, a deceitful person or impostor acting against the crown. This is a catch-all offence with a wide variety of punishments and causes.

Penalty:

Deception of a member of a city watch or ordained law bringer
  • flogging
  • 5 lashes
  • loss of 5 units
Deception of a councilman, judge or other official
  • torture up to a month
  • 15 lashes
  • loss of 20 units
Deception of a noblemen
  • torture up to a year
  • mutilation
  • loss of 40 units
Deception of a count or countess
  • Torture up to three years
  • Mutilation, or
  • Debilitating curse
  • Exile of the nation
  • loss of 100 unis
Deception of royalty
  • Exile to another plane
  • Capital punishment

Grave Robbing

The unauthorized access to graves. Raiding crypts and looting corpses defiles the sanctity of the dead. Grave robbing includes violating ancient tombs, unearthing coffins to steal corpses, and looting the bodies of the fallen. In cultures where the tombs of dead are particularly revered, grave robbing may be considered an act of desecration. See Pharasma under temple laws.

Penalty:

Common grave robbing
  • fine 100-2,000 gp
Noblemen grave robbing
  • loss of 20 to 100 units
A deceased crown official
  • loss of 20 to 50 units

Illegal fire

Having a large semi-controlled fire in a location that is not authorized to have such a flame. Wood buildings, parks and poorer districts are some common locations.

Penalty:
  • - Public flogging

Illegal Money Changing / Usury

Only authorized moneychangers may charge for a fee changing coins in Ustalav. The crown controls those fees.

Penalty:
  • Same as forgery

Illegal use of Magic without authority

Use of magic without proper permits, permission from a college of magic or a writ

Penalty:
  • fines 100gp – upwards
  • confiscation of spell book, magic item or magical equipment

Impersonation of a Crown official, a member of nobility or royalty

To assume the role of another person for entertainment or fraud. A very serious crime.

Penalty:
  • Same as fraud, on the level of the person impersonated.

Kidnapping

Abducting an individual without legal authority or cause.

Penalty:

Ustalavic citizen
  • 26 days imprisonment, Or
  • fine 1000gp – upwards
Ustalavic crowed offical
  • 40 days imprisonment, Or
  • fine 10,000gp – upwards
Ustalavic nobility
  • 320 days imprisonment, Or
  • fine 20,000gp – upwards
Ustalavic royalty
  • death

Magical assault

Magically controlling, influencing or harming a citizen of Ustalav against their will.

Penalty:
  • fine 500 gp
  • confiscation of spell book if a wizard
  • death of familiar, destruction of bonded object, or banishment of Eidolon (dependent upon severity)
  • for non wizard arcane and divine spell casters, the fine triples

Manslaughter

Also known as accidental killing. Slaying another in a lawful duel and failing to report their death is also seen as manslaughter. There is no crime if a duel and death are reported.

Penalty:
  • loss of all equipment, wealth and property
  • 520 to 1000 units

Murder

Intentional killing of a sentient being, either premeditated or as a crime of passion.

Penalty:
  • Death by Capital Punishment (Usually burning alive, drawn and quartered, public flaying, stoning, beheading, public torture until death, starvation, hanging, public exsanguination, crucifixion, or public impalement).
Exclusion clause;
  • Murder is acceptable among two consenting duellists.
  • Murder is acceptable in self defense
  • Murder is acceptable in the elimination of wanted criminals or fugitives
  • Murder is acceptable in the eradication of abominations
  • Non intelligent undead
  • Aberrations
  • Non sentient creatures
  • Creatures with intelligence 3 or lower,
  • Mindless creatures(oozes, constructs, non intelligent undead, animals)
Murder is acceptable when ridding a public menace. A public menace includes;
  • Any creature that does extensive damage to public or private property (Extensive damage in the amount of 10,000 crowns (gp) and upwards)
  • Any creature that has the ability to spread plague or disease
  • Any creature that defiles the dead without legal authority
Legal authority is a writ given by a civil official A civil official includes;
  • A judge
  • A local nobleman of proper station
  • A mayor

Oathbreaking

Breaking a holy vow is considered an unholy act.

Penalty:
  • Death by public burning and cursing of remains to be marked if ever raised from the dead. Anyone who raises a marked Oathbreaker is immediately put to death along with the Oathbreaker again.
  • Possession of Illegal or stolen goods

Having objective knowledge or negligently trafficking illegal or stolen goods.

Penalty:
  • confiscation of all property involved
  • fine, double the appraised value of traffic goods if parties involved are found guilty of trafficking.
  • If mens rea is proven (guilty mind – subject knew the item/substance was stolen or illegal, and this fact can be proven), then one weeks imprisonment per 200gp traffic may apply

Note, poison is illegal in Ustalav

Perjury

Lying under oath or any of the honourable is a very serious offence in Ustalav.

Penalty:
  • Punishable for 10 weeks heavy labor, Or
Repeat offenders
  • branded as liars, Or
  • cursed, usually a mark of judgement

Piracy

In these tough times, the illegal capture of merchant or private vessels in the pursuit of personal wealth, those caught will suffer severe punishment at the hands of the law.

Penalty:
  • death, Or
  • hard labour at sea for life for any sailor under the crowns navy

Public Drunkenness/disorderly conduct

Antisocial behaviors which attract to much attention.

Penalty:
  • detained for an evening, Or
  • fine 5gp to 2000gp (record states the highest fine was 1550gp for a half ogre whom kept breaking out of his cell)

Rape

Defiling an individual without consent.

Penalty:
  • Mutilation, Or
  • Curse

Rioting/Inciting a riot

Disrupting the peace.

Penalty;
  • Public flogging, and
  • loss of 32 units, Or
  • manual labor of the crowns roads, no less then 40 weeks

Robbery

Forcefully stealing from someone.

Penalty:
  • 50 lashes, Or
  • 26 weeks of imprisonment, Or
  • 52-520 units

Sedition

Stirring up discontent against the principality, which suggest treason, but lacks an overt act. Also the incitement of seditious behavior.

Penalty:
  • loss of 104 units, Or
  • death

Slander of an Noble or Royal

Insulting or slandering the name of a Noble or Royal.

Penalty:
  • Mutilation

Slavery, Improper

Owning illegal slaves; not having the correct paperwork for slaves kept.

Penalty:
  • fines 500gp – 150,000gp, and
  • destruction of illegal slaves

Theft

Pilfering someone’s unattended goods, such as off a cart or table in the marketplace.

Penalty:
  • public flogging, and
  • branding

Torture, Routine

Routine torture is the act of inflicting pain to extract information. This is an evil act even when performed toward an ultimate good. Many so-called heroes have been seduced into evil through the misconception that the ends justify the means. Common examples include torturing an enemy to learn the location of her headquarters, battle plans, or even the location of hostages conduced not on behalf by legal authority of the crown.

Penalty:
  • loss of 20-40 units

Torture, Sadistic

Sadistic torture is the act of causing intense suffering to derive pleasure. Those who engage in such foul deeds soon draw the attention of the Dark Powers conduced not on behalf by legal authority of the crown.

Penalties:
  • loss of 120 to 620 units, and
  • mutilation

Treason/revolt

Willingly acting of ones own accord against the crown or ordained official.

Penalty:
  • Death, and death of immediate and extended family Or
  • Exile to another plane

Trespassing

Setting foot on someone else’s land. In most cases involves illegally entering the lands of one of the honorable (noble or ordain official). It has come to also signifying the knowing entrance into lands where the offender is not allowed, usually done by signage.

Penalty:
  • fine, 5-500gp

Vagrancy

Sleeping or defecating in public places.

Penalty:
  • Time in the pillory

Laws, crime and punishment

A Great and Terrible Whisper Zeram