His Imperial Majesty Emperor Jonathan I this morning gave Imperial Consent to the Bribery Act 2017, which “makes new provision for the definition and prohibition of bribery”.
The Act of Parliament, which can be read here, gained the required five out of nine votes yesterday afternoon, and was passed by the Speaker on to the Monarch earlier this morning.
Prior to the passing of this Act, the crime of bribery was illegal only under a short subsection of a six year old Imperial Decree of the Emperor’s predecessor, Declan I.
The Bribery Act 2017 sets out a far more detailed definition of the crime, and also makes it a criminal offence to accept or request a bribe; it had previously been illegal only to offer or give one.
The Act was authored by the Emperor himself, who has an A-level qualification in Law. Its passage sees a return to the writing of detailed, comprehensive criminal law by Jonathan I, with the Emperor having authored several lengthy Acts of this type since his ascension to the Throne in 2013.
Fortunately, this new Act may never be needed; in Austenasia’s eight and a half year history, nobody has ever been charged with committing bribery.
The trial of Emperor Jonathan I has come to an end, with the Monarch having been found guilty of three counts of treason against former emperor Esmond III.
The trial, which took place online in the Imperial Court, saw the Emperor being tried for three actions he committed during December 2010 and January 2011 while Crown Prince in the process of overthrowing Esmond III in favour of Declan I.
The Emperor convened the trial after reflection on the circumstances under which his predecessor came to power, stating that he wished to see justice done.
As Monarch, the Emperor is immune from prosecution by anyone other than himself, and so technically served as judge, prosecutor, and defendant in the trial. However, for simplicity’s sake, the prosecution was argued by Sir Sebastian Linden and the defence by King Adam I of Überstadt.
The trial came to an end on 19 January, with the jury finding the Emperor guilty of all charges. He did not appeal the outcome, and was sentenced this morning by the consuls to six weeks of exile, during which he will not set foot in Austenasia.
Due to the status of the Monarch, he is not legally obliged to submit to said sentence. However, the Emperor has stated that he will voluntarily do so, spending most of the time at the Austenasian Embassy to the United Kingdom (located in Roehampton).
The exile will not in any way affect the smooth running of Austenasian government: the Emperor has not been deprived of any of his powers, and will simply exercise them online or via telephone.
The first criminal trial since May 2009 has begun in Austenasia, with the Emperor himself on trial.
HIM Emperor Jonathan I has, in an unprecedented move, charged himself with three counts of treason against Esmond III for actions committed over December 2010 and January 2011 in regards to his role in bringing Declan I to power.
In the Emperor’s recent Christmas broadcast, he announced a desire to see the legality of his role in those events investigated in order to rectify any outstanding injustices.
A select committee of the Privy Council was gathered, which helped organise a trial.
The events in question took place during and after the War of the Orlian Reunification in December 2010, when the then Crown Prince Jonathan successfully orchestrated a conflict between the Carshalton Nations to bring Declan I to power as joint Monarch in opposition to Esmond III. Although the then Crown Prince admitted his role in events the following year, no legal action was ever taken against him.
With the trial taking place in the Imperial Court, the Emperor is by a technicality judge, defendant, and prosecutor. However, in the interests of simplicity and justice, the prosecution is being argued by Sir Sebastian Linden and the defence by King Adam I of Überstadt.
The trial is taking place over Skype due to differences in time zones between the prosecution and defence. As such, it will likely take several days. The smooth running of the government is not likely to be affected during this time.
More details about the trial will be made public as events unfold.
His Imperial Majesty Emperor Jonathan I has adopted an Imperial Cipher for use as a personal emblem or seal where the Imperial Standard is inappropriate.
The cipher consists of a double-headed eagle, holding a sword and a globus cruciger, and bearing the letters “J I I” – “Jonathan I Imperator”.
When used in heraldry or as a flag, the cipher will have a background of imperial purple. It is planned for the cipher to mainly be used as a seal to authenticate papers.
The cipher is based on that of the late medieval Roman emperors of the Palaialogos dynasty.
Jonathan I is not the first Austenasian emperor to adopt an imperial cipher; Declan I did so in June 2012, and Esmond III used one in an unofficial capacity from August 2010 onwards.
At 18:38 GMT this evening, HIM Emperor Jonathan I broke the record of his predecessor to become the Empire’s longest reigning Monarch.
Jonathan I ascended to the Throne on 20 January 2013 after the abdication of Declan I. The precise record to beat was 763 days, 1 hour, 11 minutes and 30 seconds.
Each of Austenasia’s four Monarchs (except, of course, founding Emperor Terry I) have had a longer reign than their predecessor:
- Jonathan I: 20 January 2013 – present; 763 days and counting.
- Declan I: 19 December 2010 – 20 January 2013; 763 days
- Esmond III: 16 February 2010 – 20 September 2011; 580 days
- Terry I: 20 September 2008 – 16 February 2010; 414 days
Prince Ciaran, younger brother of Declan I, this morning announced his takeover of the throne of Wilcsland as King Ptolemy II.
The previous King of Wilcsland, Declan I – who also ruled as Emperor of Austenasia between 2010 and 2013, and was known in Wilcsland as King Ptolemy I Helios – has lived in London for some months now, having cut off communication with his family and homeland in Wiltshire.
Declan I had proclaimed the union of New Wessex between Wilcsland and Orly while still Emperor, but this had collapsed after Orly was liberated from his rule in June last year. He had since effectively abandoned the governance of his own kingdom, to the extent that Austenasia revoked recognition of New Wessex earlier this year.
Now, however, Wilcsland has returned. King Ptolemy II has confirmed the dissolution of New Wessex and arranged with Emperor Jonathan I for Wilcsland to become a protected state of the Empire.
This marks the end of the reign of Declan I over his native country, where he has reigned since 1999 (albeit with a one-week long interruption in 2006).
The first anniversary of the Liberation of Orly was today marked with a celebration in the Copanese Embassy at East Wrythe.
Tea and cakes were enjoyed by Emperor Jonathan I and Queen Emma of Copan, who was appointed monarch upon the Liberation one year ago.
They were joined by two prominent Orlians at the embassy, which, while under Austenasian sovereignty as an exclave of the capital, is administered under Copanese law due being under extraterritoriality. As East Wrythe is therefore in a sense both Austenasian and Orlian, it was felt to be the best location to celebrate the occasion.
The Liberation of Orly is the name given to the events of 24 June 2013, when citizens of Orly deposed Declan I and turned to the Emperor of Austenasia to restore legitimate government in Copan and the Grove, the two states which comprise Orly. Declan I had seized power over the Carshalton Nations in December 2010 by exploiting a power struggle between the then Emperor Esmond III and Crown Prince Jonathan, but had abdicated from the Austenasian Throne in January 2013. His deposition from the throne of Orly (and its re-division into Copan and the Grove) marked the end of foreign rule in the Carshalton Nations.
Jonathan I yesterday visited the Grove in a personal capacity to feed the wildlife there, an activity joyfully partaken in by the newly independent Orlians a year ago immediately after having deposed Declan I. The Emperor hinted that this may become an annual tradition.