The Dark Star Bureau,[note 1] more formally known as the USE Dark Star Bureau[note 2], was a government office in Levianta in the USE. Acting as a judicial entity since its foundation, it conducted trials for alleged witches in Evillious before being subjected to a great scandal.
Around the 9th century EC, Penry Marlon founded the bureau, establishing its courthouse in Alicegrad, Levianta. At some point, the bureau began accepting visits from students of the nearby Levin University. Later on, Hanma Baldured became head judge of the bureau. The bureau eventually began conducting trials for alleged witches across Evillious, with the accused being given a death sentence each time.
In EC 944, Elluka "Ma" Clockworker was tried for witchcraft as well as her murder of Mata Corpa, given the death sentence. However, the accused later escaped execution. In EC 958, Lana Ray was tried for witchcraft and was also given the death penalty by Hanma. At some point, Jorm Zusco was tried for his serial killings and was sentenced to execution. In EC 960, Gallerian Marlon declared the playwright Kayo Sudou innocent for her alleged witchcraft while acting in for Hanma. Gallerian was later given a thirty-day suspension from the bureau.
A year later, Hanma accepted a bribe to cancel Jorm's execution. Hanma later accepted another bribe, ruling against Loki Freezis during his trial and giving him a thirty-year imprisonment. In EC 964, Hanma mysteriously disappeared and was replaced by the acting deputy head. Later on, Gallerian became head judge, enacting reforms within the bureau. Around that time, Police Neutrality, the court's private police force, was established in response to the public's call for a police force unaffiliated with the Freezis Conglomerate.
Dark Star Scandal
In EC 978, Gallerian bribed the court employees to cover up the theft of the Marlon Spoon by Ma. Afterwards, Gallerian began accepting bribes to rule criminals innocent. That same year, he declared Bindi Freezis innocent for causing sinking the S.S. Titanis. Later, Gallerian tried Nyoze Octo for Jason Jack's murder of the prostitute Medea Col, convicting him and confiscating his family heirloom as evidence.
Later on, PN shut down the Graveyard restaurant and its waitress was given a six-month penal servitude by Gallerian. At some point, he also declared the celebrity Scherzer innocent of assaulting a woman after being given a bribe, although later declaring him guilty after a second trial took place.
In EC 983, Gallerian declared General Tony Ausdin innocent for the massacre of Zenosai village after being bribed by Tony, causing further public outrage over the apparent corruption. After the outbreak of the Leviantan Civil War, the bureau's courthouse was seized by the people's army and Gallerian was killed in his home. Some time after, Gallerian was replaced by a new head judge. After the civil war's end, Bruno Zero was liberated from prison and tried for being a member of PN. Similarly, the bureau tried to arrest Nemesis Sudou for the murder of Gallerian Marlon and Tony Ausdin, but failed due to interference from the Tasan Party.
Organization and Structure
Functioning as a government office, the Dark Star Bureau was headed by a director who also functioned as head judge. Under the head judge was the vice director; the vice director typically replaced the head judge in cases of the head judge's disappearance or death. Under the vice director were the judges, split between justice magistrates and advisor magistrates, who were further organized into various ranks. With the lowest rank being Class 7, each judge was able to ascend the different ranks over time, typically with years of hard work. Low-ranking judges could also serve as aides during trials.
The judges' ranks included assistant judges as well as senior judges; after attaining the rank of fifth class senior judge, the employee would work as an actual judge and preside over trials. Judges were typically accepted into the bureau after passing a government entrance exam taken at the end of their university education. Aside from this, the bureau also staffed aides, lawyers and security guards for their trials.
Conceptualization and Origin
- The bureau's name may be derived from the concept of a dark star, a star-like object that emits little or no visible light.