The North Pacific v. Blue Wolf II

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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So far the Defence has asked a number of questions of the witness and has not yet contructed an argument from any of them. Because of that it has seemed so far that the sole reason for this line of questioning is to uncover the identity of the witness.

I said that further information that compromised the witness would not be allowed, not that your question could not be answered at all.
 
Mystery Witness, in that supposed conversation with the Defendant were there any other details given about this alleged "plot" against TNP?

Furthermore, did you ever have any other conversations with the defendant in which TNP was the topic?

Lastly, do you have any physical, in-game proof, that an act of Treason or Sedition was committed?

Keep in mind that the Witness will be asked to provide material to support any claims, unless, of course, the Court rules that this act would “compromise” their identity.



[size=-2]Edited because Flemmy is a Grammar Nazi.[/size]
 
Mystery Witness, in that supposed conversation with the Defendant were there any other details given about this alleged "plot" against TNP?

Furthermore, did you ever have any other conversations with the defendant in which TNP was the topic?

Lastly, do you have any physical, in-game proof, that an act of Treason or Sedition was committed?

Keep in mind that the Witness will be asked to provide material to support any claims, unless, of course, the Court rules that this act would “compromise” their identity.



[size=-2]Edited because Flemmy is a Grammar Nazi.[/size]
Objection, all of these questions relate to exhibit C. Asking the witness to provide more evidence is either irrelevant or at worst, insinuating that exhibit C is irrelevant.

The onus is own the defence to defend themselves against exhibit C, not for the witness to prove their own relevance.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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Overruled Mr Sniffles.

The questions are acceptable.

However regarding the Defence's final point, there is no requirement for the witness to do any such thing. If there was any proof I imagine the prosecution would have presented it.
 
The Defense would like to point out to the Court that if there was any proof that would act to exonerate the Defendant the Prosecution would more than likely opt not to present it.

And the Defense, for the record, will still ask the Secret Witness to back up any claims of Treason or Sedition that they may have since we can do that. If they choose not to provide such information that would support said claims, however, the Defense really isn't worrying about it.
 
The Defense would like to point out to the Court that if there was any proof that would act to exonerate the Defendant the Prosecution would more than likely opt not to present it.

And the Defense, for the record, will still ask the Secret Witness to back up any claims of Treason or Sedition that they may have since we can do that. If they choose not to provide such information that would support said claims, however, the Defense really isn't worrying about it.
This witness has already provided evidence in Exhibit C, which why the defendant is on trial. Why would the witness need to provide more and why is the Defence asking for this?

Relevance?

Also, is the Defence going to ask a question or are they just going to bloviate until his accusers die of old age?
 
Thank you.

Now looking back on Exhibit C...



Is this the evidence you submitted to Rhindon Blade? (Obviously discounting the blocking out of your name and the arrow for emphasis.)

And if so, I ask the following the questions to which a simple yes or no will suffice.

Does the accused freely admit to conducting a raid, an act of aggression against the region of the North Pacific?

Now looking back to prior testimony, in your opinion of the following quote by Former English Colony; did BW attempt to incite her to overthrow the legally elected government of the North Pacific, mere weeks before an election?

FEC:
Sniffles:
And finally, do you believe that BW was attempting to incite you, (to rouse, stir up, or excite,) you to break the law by overthrowing Sydia as delegate in the nationstates game?
Yes, I definitely believed he was trying to get me to revolt against the current system of government.
And looking back to Exhibit B...


In your opinion, is it not seen that the accused did much more than "playfully discuss" overthrowing the democratically elected government of the North Pacific with a friend, but actively aided others to perpetuate his absurd and destructive scheme?

And given the evidence you have patriotically submitted to the Court, and all that has been presented to this Court; has BW acted in a responsible manner befitting his oath to this region's Constitution and society?

Yet again, the prosecution will allow others to rely on theatrics and sanctimonious speeches. The simple facts of this case are clear.
 
Objection, this Witness can not be asked to testify about Exhibit B seeing as he had nothing to do with the discussion between Mr. Blade and Mr. Tiddler and his opinion upon that evidence is irrelevant. Additionally the Witness can not be asked about the testimony of Erastide as his opinion is also irrelevant to Exhibit A.

This Witness does not have the "expert" status that Mr. Blade was granted and thus his opinion can not be admitted as evidence.

The Defense asks the Court to restrict the Prosecution’s questions to Exhibit C only, just as the Prosecution asked the Court to do the same in regards to the Defense.

Sniffles:
Does the accused freely admit to conducting a raid, an act of aggression against the region of the North Pacific?
Objection.

Question is misleading and the Witness has already admitted that he has no proof that any such "raid" ever occurred in TNP.
 
The defence opened this line of questioning by insinuating that there were no evidence evidence of sedition and treason, this is to merely show that while the witness may not have any further evidence, such evidence does indeed exist.

Question is misleading and the Witness has already admitted that he has no proof that any such "raid" ever occurred in TNP.
My question is about the actual discussion between the accused and the witness. And further from the point, the actual transcript is evidence of such a raid.

I await the Court's ruling.
 
If I say I was going to make a moon base a few months back, does that automatically imply that I have now indeed made a moon base? Of course not, that logic is so flawed that you really don't need someone to explain to you why its wrong.

It also so happens to be the same line of logic the Prosecution is using.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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What did I tell you before? If someone objects wait for me to reply. Your bickering afterwards has no bearing on anything.

Objections sustained. Mr Sniffles, your questions are not ones this witness is able to answer.
 
Very well, once again.

Is Exhibit C an honest representation of the transcript you submitted to Rhindon Blade? (Obviously discounting the blocking out of your name and the arrow for emphasis.)
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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So sorry about that delay... Please extend my apologies to the rest of the court.


QUOTE 
Is Exhibit C an honest representation of the transcript you submitted to Rhindon Blade? (Obviously discounting the blocking out of your name and the arrow for emphasis.)


Yes, it is an identical copy and pasting of what I sent him.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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Since the Attorney General appears to be absent we shall continue. We have therefore finished with the witness. If the Defence wishes to make a closing argument then we can finish up this trial.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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You can call them. The Prosecution just won't cross-examine them. That's if you want to. I'd recommend that we move to end proceedings shortly, I don't see much need to continue.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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Being as you have been active on the forum Blue Wolf, I will give you until Sunday to post a closing statement. If you don't post before Sunday then I will presume you have finished your defense and will then conclude this trial.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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Entered 12 October 2009, before the Court of the North Pacific:

Judgement in the case The North Pacific v. Blue Wolf II


The Court hereby finds the defendant:

On the charge of Treason NOT GUILTY

On the charge of Sedition NOT GUILTY

A full account of the Courts decision will be posted as soon as possible.

Signed,

Haor Chall
Chief Justice of The North Pacific





OOC: I will be posting an explanation of my decision in detail but I was unable to find the time this weekend due to a RL family emergency which strangely took priority. I will endevour to write it up as soon as I can.
 

Haor Chall

The Power of the Dark Side
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The charges against Blue Wolf II were for treason and sedition. On both counts he was found not guilty by this Court. The Legal Code defines treason and sedition as the following:

A- "Treason" is defined as taking arms or providing material support to a group or region for the purpose of undermining or overthrowing the lawful government of The North Pacific or any of its treatied allied groups and regions as governed by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

A - "Sedition" is defined as an intentional attempt on the official forums or within the NationStates region "The North Pacific" to incite the Nations of The North Pacific to revolt in a manner not sanctioned by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
To prove treason, therefore, would require evidence that action was taken in game – such as troop movements, etc. Though the discussions seen in the evidence provided by the prosecution proved that Blue Wolf II discussed carrying out what would potentially be treasonous activity there was no evidence that this activity itself ever occurred. Without any evidence or proof that “material” actions were taken in game, I did not feel there were any grounds for a conviction for treason.

The first charge was fairly easy to reach a conclusion on. The second was somewhat more problematic. The first evidence provided to the Court did not form part of the trial as Outer Kharkistania who provided the evidence and was to be a witness, destroyed the evidence and refused to take the stand. That incident was one that just highlights the difficulty of conducting a trial here. After all, it would not be possible for someone to do that in RL – without facing charges themselves. I’ll come on to that later. The evidence and testimony of Former English Colony was the most persuasive as it was of solid providence and from a former Delegate of TNP at that. The latter evidence in the case detailed similar activity by the defendant but some of it was of less certain origin.

However all the evidence provided sufficient detail of activity carried out by the defendant which can easily be described as “intentional attempts to incite revolt”. However the crux of the argument therefore falls on the definition of sedition which specifically refers to activity on “the official forums or within the NationStates region "The North Pacific”. The law is, in the case, quite specific. And none of the evidence provided proved that any potentially seditious activity took place in game or on this forum. Some of the evidence and testimony did allude to in-game activity but no evidence of this activity was provided to reasonable prove it. I wrestled for quite some time with this seeming technicality. Afterall, part of the job of the justices is to deliver interpretations of the law requested by judicial review. In this case the law is not ambiguous and to have found any other verdict would have been not a matter of interpretation of the law but of ignoring the law. It was for this reason that I reached the verdict of ‘not guilty’.


Recommendations

This trial was for me, if not all others involved, a learning experience. For a wide variety of reasons there were things that did not function well during the trial. As such I have a number of recommendations to make to the Regional Assembly so that future trials, if or when they occur, will hopefully avoid some of the problems that I faced this time around. These are merely my thoughts from the running of this trial which I believe the Regional Assembly may wish to consider.

Firstly, the existing Legal Code for crimes needs to be re-looked at. The definitions of the crimes, such as sedition should be re-written to take into account the wide variety of sources that are linked to – but not part of – the game. The crimes should be expanded – in particular to provide for contempt of court so that future witnesses cannot derail proceedings (or, at least, face consequences for doing so) as happened at the very beginning of this trial.

Though it was not relevant to this trial in the end, sentencing is something which will need to be addressed. The Constitution as it stands only allows for ejection as a punishment for breaking the law. Whilst that would be the sentence I would expect to hand down for treason and serious offences I think that for lesser crimes ejection is a bit extreme and that expulsion/suspension from the Regional Assembly should be considered as could prevention from running for office as might be relevant to certain crimes (election fraud, etc).

Lastly, a more robust and definite procedure for the running of trials should be instituted. I believe that Eluvatar had a proposal along these lines before the Regional Assembly a few months ago, I don’t know whether that proposal died in the Assembly or was just forgotten. Nevertheless I believe that we need to consider the structure of running a trial in a forum environment. The procedures in the old Court Guidelines are too lengthy and based too heavily on “real life” legal systems and as such are too unwieldy – in my opinion – for our forum.

As I say, these are just my thoughts, I am happy to discuss them further with the Regional Assembly although I feel that my current position as Chief Justice means that I should not be the one to create the legislation itself as I may be called upon to review the legislation in the future.

Haor Chall
Chief Justice of The North Pacific
 
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