Guilty but with mitigating circumstances. Chilean justice has finally reduced the sentence against Darth Vader, dark villain of the Star Wars saga, who appeared before the Valparaiso Court of Appeal on Sunday in a mock trial organized on the occasion of the Country's Heritage Day.
120 kilometers west of the Chilean capital Santiago, the Valparaiso Court of Appeal has issued its decision against Darth Vader after an educational trial, aimed at bringing justice closer to Chilean citizens on the Day of the heritage celebrated this weekend in the country. True to the storyline of the saga and its Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, Darth Vader was convicted for cutting off the hand of his son, Luke Skywalker. "What is condemned is the mutilation, not what Mr. Vader did before," the court ruled.
For this reason and "taking into account the penalties provided for by the Space Penal Code (...), he will be sentenced to a just penalty". Mr. Vader will have to "remain frozen for 30 years in carbonite" and will be prohibited "from approaching the victim, Luke, at a distance of at least three planets for 30 years". Also, Mr. Vader was forever banned from the "dark use of force" and his lightsaber. “I ask neither more nor less than justice,” his lawyer, Juan Carlos Manriquez, told the court. “He is a human being with rights (…) He is almost a machine, but also a man. A father".
The objective of this life-size reconstituted trial was to "bring justice, so little understood, closer to citizens", explained Maria del Rosario Lavin, president of the Valparaiso Court of Appeal. “Because people know the trials and the courts well, but very little about the role” of a court of appeal, she believes. “Of course I have dealt with terribly bad criminals during my career”, insists the magistrate, who underlines that the presence of someone like Darth Vader is not “a novelty”.
As part of Heritage Day, institutions, museums and multiple buildings, including the presidential palace of La Moneda in Santiago, opened their doors free of charge to the public, all over Chile.