Penal system of the Mascyllary Kingdom

Woman convicted of theft and punished by wearing a shrew's fiddle, c. 1887 (colourised)
An accused Viliks insurgent is executed by a firing squad of the Mascyllary Army, Aldia, 1918

The penal system of the Mascyllary Kingdom was the administrative national system for detention and punishment of an individual who had been convicted of breaking the law through and of the justice system of the Kingdom. It used a variety of different methods of punishment, such as incarceration in prisons, paying fines, the pillory and whipping as corporal punishment, and the use of the death penalty. Prison labor was almost universal and convicted people at large had no legal protection during their time of punishment, which led to them being often abused through torture and rape. The legal framework was designed to deprive the lower class of their personal freedoms and to effectively combat souring crime; it also served to manipulate politics and economics, convicting enemies and individuals of too much influence to harsh sentences under the disguise of law enforcement. However, often sentences were arbitrary; around half of all convictions of the system between 1830-1900 are estimated to have been false, faulty, or without any legal basis.

Mascylla's penal system until 1924 is noted to have had extremely harsh means of penalization, which can be traced back to the criminal law of it's military. Furthermore, reforms of the judicial branch and its laws could only be proposed and approved by the usually conservative and militaristic Monarch, while the liberalised Reichsrat had virtually no power to demand or propose reform of the justice system. The penal system remained mostly intact throughout the history of the Mascyllary Kingdom, until a formal law code (Krongesetz) was implemented by the May Republic and later by Mascylla, forbidding capital punishment and physical assault on prisoners, in compliance with the AN Charter, and introducing their rehabilitation.

Its legacy is still widely disputed and has raised questions about the effectiveness of extreme penal systems on combating crime. While some argue the system resembled "modern slavery", others see it as a functioning model of law enforcement and, to a lesser extent, advocate for the formal reintroduction of capital punishment. Psychologists also determine the criminal justice system of the Mascyllary Kingdom to be a decisive factor in the latter development of dissatisfaction with the government that would culminate into the Mascyllary Revolution, and also a behavioural change within society between 1850 and 1920.