You have been taken by the Mists

Author Topic: Essays on Dementlieuse Law: Éléonore Ambroiseux  (Read 374 times)

Grandeur Accepted

  • Theatre de la Cathedrale
  • Undead Master
  • ****
  • Posts: 336
Essays on Dementlieuse Law: Éléonore Ambroiseux
« on: March 30, 2023, 01:31:57 AM »
The following essays are written by Mlle. Éléonore Ambroiseux and submitted to the University of Dementlieu Faculté de Droit for publication.
Éléonore de Ambroiseux-Tabouillot

Grandeur Accepted

  • Theatre de la Cathedrale
  • Undead Master
  • ****
  • Posts: 336
Defamation: On Libel and Slander
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2023, 01:32:16 AM »
Quote
Defamation: On Libel and Slander
By Mlle. Éléonore Ambroiseux

     The two most interpreted and misunderstood offenses in Dementlieu are in regards to defamation: slander and libel. Defamation can be defined colloquially as destructive statements and actions perpetuated by one person or a group to harm the honor or reputation of an individual or institution’s honor and reputation. In the case of slander, one must have intentionally spoken an untrue statement or made falsified claims, either in public or in private, done in a manner that harms another individual’s reputation. In the case of libel, it refers to any written content that is defamatory in nature and proven to be false. There exists two forms of defamation that can be addressed in the republic: criminal and civil.

     In the Serene Republic, the burden of proof for slander and libel are quite high, requiring proof that an individual both knowingly and intentionally said false words to harm someone’s reputation, as well as proof that someone’s reputation and honor has been damaged. Contrary to popular opinion, libel and slander does not require any monetary loss to be proven, though it is one of the most common factors in determining it. While officially recognized as a crime in the republic, it can also be pursued between individuals on a civil level. Investigation for defamation can also take place through summoning witnesses, who are procured to testify that an individual’s honor and/or reputation have been harmed in their perception. In such cases, this typically is someone of social and political standing, such as a titled member of the peerage, or multiple witnesses of reputable birth who corroborate that the offended party’s honor was sullied.

     In criminal proceedings, slander and libel are punished by the state. The Gendarmerie Nationale de Dementlieu are the ones who handle the investigation for such, then it is their duty to write a case summary. As it is not a high crime, libel and slander typically do not typically go to court in criminal proceedings. Instead, the case would likely go before a magistrate who will either approve or deny the Gendarmerie Nationale’s charges. The punishment typically for such things is a substantial fine to the offending party, however, in egregious cases it can range to imprisonment, and, in rare historical cases, death. In these severe cases, the matter would be elevated to the Cour de Justice.

     In civil proceedings, charges of slander and libel are pursued by the offended party, the plaintiff, versus the perceived offender, the defendant. This can commonly be done in concurrence of a civil suit, though it is not always necessary. Civil proceedings most often occur in cases where monetary loss is involved from defamatory remarks. In the case of a civil suit, defamation is proven to a magistrate, who ultimately decides if the standard of proof is met for defamation, and the defendant is ordered to pay monetary amount of compensation, to rescind the defamatory statement, and in some cases, required to give public apology.

     Here is a theoretical example of proceedings against defamation, (note all names and individuals are purely fictitious and any similarity is purely coincidence): a common man named Jean-Paul Regnault spreads a false rumor that a notable Baron has engaged in extramarital relations. Either the Baron reports the matter to the Gendarmerie Nationale de Dementlieu, or the case is picked up in another fashion. M. Regnault has told commoners and members of the gentry alike the story of his infidelity. Because the rumor can be verified to be false, charges can still be pressed against M. Regnault. Though there is no direct financial loss to the Baron, both his honor and reputation might have been damaged as a result of the slanderous statement. If multiple common men and women, members of the gentry, or if someone of standing such as a Vicomte, stepped forward, or is summoned by the Gendarmerie, and testifies that the Baron was shunned among his peers because of M. Regnault’s statement, then there would be sufficient evidence of damage to the Baron’s honor and reputation. The case is then placed before a magistrate with charges recommended by the Gendarmerie Nationale, and ultimately decided by the prononceur. A common fine for a case like this might be upwards from ten thousand solars to a hundred thousand solars. Likewise, a civil case may be pushed in tangent by the Baron against M. Regnault. The state can share pertinent details around the criminal investigation with the magistrate. As the burden of proof has been met in the criminal proceeding, monetary recompense for damages can be accrued by directly the Baron from M. Regnault.

     Though the above case is textbook in its outline, proceedings are often far more complicated. If multiple witnesses come forward with different feelings on whether harm was done to one’s honor or reputation, the burden of proof is significantly more obfuscated. In cases such as these, it is far more common for members of the peerage to be the guiding testimony since their noble word is inherently more valuable than those of lower birth in the eyes of the republic.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2023, 01:34:58 AM by and a dark wind blows »
Éléonore de Ambroiseux-Tabouillot

Grandeur Accepted

  • Theatre de la Cathedrale
  • Undead Master
  • ****
  • Posts: 336
Dementlieuse Rights: Citizens and Non-Citizens
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2023, 04:02:44 PM »
Quote
Dementlieuse Rights: Citizens and Non-Citizens
By Mlle. Éléonore Ambroiseux


     There exists no more prestigious place in all of the Core where people are afforded more personal liberties than the Serene Republic of Dementlieu. However, there is often a misconception among foreigners that all rights here extend in turn to them. Foreigners are granted privileges, including the ability of free speech, though they are not afforded the same rights to free speech as our citizenry. A foreigner’s misuse of their privileges in the Serene Republic may be met with far more scrutiny than that of a citizen.

     Every man and woman born in Dementlieu is automatically a citizen. Those with a Dementlieuse parent are often also conferred citizenship status. Unlike many other countries throughout the Core, foreigners possess the ability to become productive citizens in the republic. The process requires careful vetting, and not everyone who tries to do so is granted citizenship. The most common way foreigners become citizens is by filling out the appropriate paperwork to do so and having members of the gentry speak on their behalf and recommend them, though should these same foreigners have a poor reputation, members of the gentry can speak against their recommendation. A less common way is that the Council of Brilliance and the Lord Governor award citizenship for great service rendered onto the republic. Should the Council of Brilliance decide to award a foreigner with citizenship, they are given the same rights that natural born citizens are afforded.

     All citizens, whether noble or common-born, are afforded inalienable rights. As envisioned by the Law of Leon, members of the gentry are granted advanced rights by way of their noble birth, being the only ones permitted to vote on the Lord Governor but also the responsibility to aid with its retinues during times of war.  Though they are afforded this right and responsibility over the common-born citizenry, the rest of the laws of Dementlieu provide that the citizens of the Serene Republic are granted the following rights: freedom of speech (written, printed, or otherwise), the right to hold peaceful assembly, to be granted food, work and education. There is no guarantee of a trial for citizens who break the law, though the duty of the Gendarmerie Nationale and Cour de Justice is to provide one where there is a reasonable doubt of guilt in the case of high crimes. Similarly, the Gendarmerie Nationale and a prononcieur, appointed by the Advisor of Law and Justice, typically determine any charges and fines for those found guilty of high crimes and other offenses.
   
     For foreigners arriving in Dementlieu, the Serene Republic’s enlightened society can sometimes overwhelm them to think that they are afforded the same rights and privileges as the enlightened body, our citizens. Foreigners are guaranteed nothing in writing by Dementlieu. They are allowed to partake in enlightened society and are expected to follow the laws as they are written, as well as meet the punishments as they are transcribed in Dementlieuse law. They are expected to follow the cultural practices and uphold a sense of decorum while they operate in Dementlieu. Through the generosity of Dementlieuse society, foreigners are allowed to partake in various privileges. Most can expect, except in cases of libel or slander, that they are able to indulge in the same free speech that citizens are able to indulge in. In rare cases, affluent foreigners who have contributed to society or hold significant influence in their station can go to trial.

     Regarding solicitors and advocacy, citizens and Dementlieuse institutions are afforded the ability to challenge charges levied against them when it comes to high crimes. These crimes are investigated by the Gendarmerie Nationale and a prononcieur appointed by the state, which can be disputed and challenged by a legal advocate. For any other offense, however, charges can simply be placed uncontested on a suspect by the Gendarmerie Nationale de Dementlieu without it needing the charges to go before magistrate. While solicitors can attempt to argue and dispute some charges from any minor offenses that are not high crimes, there is no promise that the Gendarmerie Nationale has to allow a defendant the ability to contest their charges for minor offenses, nor is there any right to trial guaranteed. In other words, the Gendarmerie Nationale is permitted to judicate minor infractions, usually in the forms of banishment and fines. As foreigners have no rights in Dementlieu, they are rarely afforded a trial in the case of high crimes, nor are they usually permitted any form of legal advocacy to dispute any other charges.

     In summary, among its sister nations, there is no more renown land throughout the Core that offers the same amount of legal protections to its citizens than Dementlieu. While foreigners may enjoy the fruits of living among the citizens of the Serene Republic, they face no guarantee that privileges will not be infringed upon. This is not out of some barbarism, but rather an incentive for foreigners to work to become a part of enlightened society. If these individuals truly wish to be a part of the most advanced nation throughout the Core, then they must work for it and show good faith in the capacity that a citizen might.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2023, 04:04:38 PM by and a dark wind blows »
Éléonore de Ambroiseux-Tabouillot

Grandeur Accepted

  • Theatre de la Cathedrale
  • Undead Master
  • ****
  • Posts: 336
Quote
Noblesse Oblige: Expectations, Responsibilities, and Privileges of the Gentry
By Mlle. Éléonore Ambroiseux


      To outsiders, perhaps the most daunting aspect of society in Dementlieu is the notion of the peerage and the gentry in comparison to the common citizen. The premise of the enlightened form of government that the Serene Republic of Dementlieu practices, which has yielded a society more advanced than any throughout the entirety of the Core, comes from the founding days of Dementlieu when Emperor Léon formed the state and established the Council of Brilliance. The Law of Léon put in place gives credence to the idea that men and women of noble birth are enlightened and are the ones to guide and provide for the less fortunate among us.

     The noble scions of the noble families throughout Dementlieu are charged to be enlightened in their ability, unless they are deemed otherwise, in which case their nobility is called into question, and titles may be attained or provisions attached to correct an erroneous course of action. Those that do not prove to the Council of Brilliance and the Lord Governor that they can be redeemed are then ousted from the gentry, in rare cases. Likewise, common-born individuals have had also had their families ennobled for showing great service and distinguishing themselves to the Serene Republic, where they take the responsibilities like any other members of the gentry.

      All members of the gentry are expected to carry themselves as model citizens by right of the nobility of their blood. They should, at all times, carry themselves with decorum, grace, and embody what it means to be Dementlieuse. Those of gentle birth also act in a manner which represents their family. Young women should never be in attendance without a proper chaperone. In the past, disputes between noblemen were usually settled by a duel. While the Gendarmerie Nationale does not recognize duels as legally binding matters, it is still commonplace to see a nobleman call a duel to those who sleight them. It is entirely frowned upon for members of the nobility to marry down rather than furthering the gentleness of their bloodline. Noblewomen who marry commoners immediately lose their noble status. A nobleman who marries a common woman would be conferred noble status by marriage, though if the decision was made erroneously and in poor judgment the Council of Brilliance has held the nobleman in contempt. Likewise, work in trades is grounds to lose one’s noble status, as those of gentle birth are seen above such work.

      Members of the peerage, that is, titled members of the gentry who have been allotted land by the Council of Brilliance, are expected to bring prosperity to the land that they govern, with increased responsibility the greater their title. All are expected to raise a noble retinue and, in times of war, lend their aid to the state and meet the needs of the republic. It is for this reason that the peerage is under the scrutinous gaze of the Council of Brilliance. Those which have been found in abuse of their station and their land, can and have had their titles attained in the past.

      While common-born citizens are not given the same breadth of rights as the nobility, they also do not share in the extensive duties and obligations of the nobility. The vision of Leon was that the enlightened families were to guide the common people and Dementlieu out of their infancy; while their station affords privilege, it is not free. The members of the gentry, for example, are all given the right to vote on the Lord-Governor in their election. However, it is expected that the nobility act in an enlightened way for all of those in the Serene Republic; their interests should be guided in the favor of all Dementlieuse, but especially those who need it most, a principle known as noblesse oblige. This is the same principle in which Emperor Léon formed the Serene Republic, and is the guiding principle in all matters of the aristocracy and governance.

     The privileges of the gentry is then that they are afforded wealth and prestige among their respectable peers. In comparison to common citizens, their word is generally taken as more prominent and reliable. This is especially true in the case of titled members of the peerage and individuals recognized by the Council of Brilliance, such as chevaliers and maitres. Members of the peerage may, rightfully so, be afforded more immediate attention from the Gendarmerie Nationale de Dementlieu in addressing their concerns and coming to their aid. Though it should be stressed that there is no hard rule pressed in this case, it would reflect poorly for anyone to give precedence to commoners than to that of nobility.

     It should be noted that the number of privileges that are conferred from being aristocracy are only in a single field: the nobility are the only ones allowed to vote on the Lord Governor. Though many houses are affluent and wealthy in the aristocracy, the duties and burdens of nobility are far more than people may expect. Most other legal privileges afforded to the gentry are a simply courtesy of polite society, though a much warranted one.
Éléonore de Ambroiseux-Tabouillot