lt is without doubt that the rapid proliferation of high-tech hardware has created a major potential for misuse of such equipment and technology. To reduce the potential for misuse and to minimize the fallout in ail other situations, laws have been enacted restricting the availability and governing the control and development of sensitive technology.

Laws, and the regulated enforcement of laws, are necessary to promote a strong and stable society. Only a strong and stable society, however. can hope to maintain a fair and Judicious legal system in any form. Although the legal frame• work for governing technological proliferation exists in many areas of the world. several governments have suffered (and some still do) from economic, political, and biological turmoil. Recovery is slow and incomplete in man y communities, making it difficult to Impose consistent Legal restrictions on anythings, it is not unheard of for laws and the level of enforcement to differ slightly from county to county. or even from sector to sector within the same city.


The first way a government can place a check and balance on technological proliferation is to place restrictions on who may manufacture. self, and possess such equipment. The Shadowrun rules reflect this restriction by assigning an Availability Code to each piece of equipment.

Availability is a two·part rating, representing a combination of several factors, all of them relating to how difficult it is to obtain the item. The first number in the code is an index of the items raw availability-the higher the number, the harder it is to find the equipment.

Any time a character wishes to purchase restricted or hightech goods, he must first locate a source and then make a Success Test against an appropriate Social Skill such as Bribery. Etiquette, Negotiation, and so on. The exact skill used depends on the situation, with the first number of the Availability Code as the Target Number. The second part of the Availability Code represents the base time it takes for the character to actually get the Item lento his possession. If the character attempting the purchase makes a successful Social Skill Success Test. he may apply any extra successes to reduce the base time for acquisition. for instance, a character witch Negotiation 4 wants to purchase an item with an Availability Code of 5/10 days. His soclal Skill Test yields two successes, wich indicates chat his source has located the item, but will need five days to get it in stock.

Permits for possession and transport can be obtained in a similar manner for any items that recquire them. that is, If the individual can justify his need for such a license. A “P” in the Availability Code indicates that a permit for the object is obtainable (c.g., 4P/6 hours). To represent the inherent difficulties involved in obtaining permits for restricted equipment, add +2 to the Availability Target Number when making the necessary Success Test for purchasing permits. That is, if the item code is 4P/I week, use a Target Number 6 to calculate permit availability and a Target Number 4 to calculate the availability of the item itself. Unless otherwise noted, the price for most permits is usualy 5 percent of the sale price of the item for permission to possess, and 10 percent of the sale price for permission to possess and transport (in both cases. round up to the nearest nuyen).

purchase of restricted Items through legitimate channels usually requires the presentation of a valid license or permit. Without a permit. the only source for restricted equipment is the street or the shadow market. lt is possible to obtain permits through street channels (albeit at the higher street prices).

Pennies are annual and renewable (If renewal can be Justified) without need for an Availability Test if the permit fee is paid before the expiration of the initial license. in many cases, government agencies, certain government licensees, and registered security and laws enforcement agencies are exempt from the need to purchase permits. They must, however, present their credentials whenever asked to do so. Items that are fully legal do not require a permit. though registered agencies may acquire licenses for equipment for which no standard license is available.

Items are generally easier to get on the street and from the gray market. When purchasing from such sources. apply the Street Index multiple. but subtract -2 from the Availability Code. Spending extra money may further reduce the difficulty of acquisition and the required waiting time. For every additional +25 percent of the purchase price (i.e., price alter factoring in the Street Index) spent, reduce the Availability Target Number by -1 (but never less than a Target Number 2) and reduce the required time by-20 percent (this reduction is made before the actual Availability Test).

Availability tests are only made if the source is willing to carry or fence the requested item. Most fixers and street sources will shy away from items whose Availability Code is too high or that are blatantly and grossly illegal (e.g .. bacterial weapons. tactical military weapons. and so on).


The abrupt introduction of new technologies has spurred recent changes and ratifications to the existing legal structure relating to equipment and unlawful behavior. These changes generally expand the list of items considered restricted access and revise the list of resulting fines and jail terms.

To summarize the legal ramifications of being found guilty of possession of a restricted item, Shadowrun uses the Legality Rating. The Legality Rating is a two-part code. The first number represents the severity of restriction: the lower the number. the higher the level of restriction. In any casual encounter with law enforcement officials or with security personnel empowered to act as law enforcement officials, use this number as a Target Number against the officer's Security or Police Procedures Skill, (in any pursuit encounter. it is assumed that the officers will automatically consider the offenders to be dangerous unless otherwise motivated or informed.) in most cases, this test is only necessary if the attending officer either suspects the presence of restricted items or visually recognizes/identifies restricted Items (the officer must make a Perception Test if the Items are concealed). If the Security or police Procedures Success Test fails, the officer does not notice any improprieties. With one success, the officer is aware of the situation, but will not make the effort to arrest the offender (although he will probably issue a warning). Any additional successes indicate that the officer will press the issue, i.e., ask the individual to present a permit (if one is available) or attempt to arrest him. Severity of restriction is flexible and very relative, fluctuating from sector to sector. depending on the level of enforcement. In low-enforcement areas, the Restriction Target Number may be increased by up to +3 (almost everyone looks the other way). Conversely, in highly enforced areas, the target Number may drop by as much as -3 (but never less than a Target Number 2).

The second part of the Legality Rating lists the restriction category under which the object falls (see below for more details).

Generally, the Legality Rating refers to the normal Seattle/ UCAS standard. Some variation in the item's legality may exist among the various multinational. extraterritorial megacorporations. What is illegal in UCAS may simply be controlled at Mitsuhama. See Jurisdiction. page 106. for more information.

Restricted ITEMS

Ali restricted items are divided into categories representing similar types of items. Each category is represented by a letter code. Following is a list of categories and examples of Items included in each.

Category A: Small bladed Weapon

This includes any sharp-edged, hand-held weapon (including Impromptu weapons) with a cutting edge under 18 centimeters long.

Category B: Large bladed Weapon

This includes any sharp-edged, hand-held weapon (indud ing Impromptu weapons) with a cutting edge more than 18 centimeters long. This category also includes axes. pole arms, and cybernetic blade weapons (hand razors and spurs). Permits for weapons in this category cost 100Y for possession. 250Y for transport.

Category C: Blunt Weapon

This includes any non-edged hand-held weapon (including impromptu weapons). This category includes clubs. barons. and ail shock weapons (shock gloves and shock batons).

Category D: Projectile Weapon

This includes any weapon specifically designed for throwing. and any muscle-powered or mechanically powered ranged weapon(spears. bows,and crossbows). Permits for weapons of this category cost 125$ for possession, 300$ for transport.

Category l: Pistol

This includes any revolver or semi-automatic pistol, regardless of caliber. Permits for weapons of this category cost 200$ for possession 600$ for transport.

Category f: Rifle

This includes any single-action rifle or manual-action shotgun (regardless of barrel length). Permits for weapons of 1his category cost 300Y for possession, 600Y for transport.

Category G: Automatic Weapon

This includes any weapon whose rate of fire exceeds one per pull (includes all assault rifles. machine pistols. and sub-machine guns). Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category H: Heavy Weapon

This includes all cannons, machine guns. and other heavy caliber weapons, Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category I: Explosives

This includes all explosives, including propelled (HE rounds) or demolition charges. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category J: Military Weapon

This includes any military-graded/issued weapon, not specifically covered by other categories. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category K: Military Armor

This includes any armor (whether partial or full} intended for law enforcement. Military, or security work. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category L: Military Ammunition

This includes any .Special-purpose ammunition (APDS, FL, and such} designated for law enforcement, military, or security use. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Class A Bioware (BA)

This includes all bioware of a paralegal nature. including damage compensators. Orthoskin, pain editors, and trauma damper. Permits are available (only possession required).

Class B Bioware (BB)

This includes all bioware designated for law enforcement. military, or security work. This includes adrenal pump, muscle augmentation, suprathyroids, synaptic accelerators, and toxin exhalers. Permits are available (only possession required, but cost is 10 percent of sale price),

Class C Bioware (BC)

This includes all military-grade bioware. including adrenal pump-2, muscle augmentation-3 (and higher), and synaptic accelerator-2, Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered .security and law-enforcement agencies.

Class CA: Class A Cyberware

This includes all cyberware of a paralegal nature. This includes bone ladig (plastic), crypto circuit HD, dermal plating, internal voice masks. smartgun links. and vehicle control rigs, Permits are available (only possession required).

Category CB: Class B Cyberware

This includes all cyberware designated for law enforcement, military, or security work. This includes bone lacing {aluminum). boosted reflexes, muscle replacement. program carrier, scramble breaker HD, Level 1 tactical computer, and wired reflexes. Permits are available (only possession required but cost 10 percent of sale price).

Category CC: Class C Cyberware

This covers all military-grade cyberware, including bone lacing (titaniurn), cortex bombs. cranial cyberdecks, cyberweapons, level 3 muscle replacement (and higher), level 2 tactical computer (and higher), and Level 3 wired reflexes. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category CD: Class D Matrlx Technology

This includes air unregistered cyberdecks and Matrix program software, Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category E1: Class A Equipment

This includes all equipment of a paralegal nature, including jammers and laser microphones. Permits are available (only possession required).

Category E2: Class B Equipment

This covers an equipment designated for law enforcement. Military, or security work, including data codebreaker, dataline taps, maglock passkeys, and voice identifiers. Permits are available (only possession required, but cost is 10 percent of sale price).

Category E3: Class C Equipment

This includes all military-grade equipment. Special licenses are available to legitimate, registered security and law-enforcement agencies.

Category M1: Class A Controlled

This includes controlled chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

Category M2: Class B Controlled

This includes controlled neural electronics (BTLs and hyper­slm).

Category M3: Class C Controlled

This includes microbiological-warfare agents.



Weapons and equipment-related offenses vary from simple possession to use with intent. These offenses carry a number rating, When an individual is charged with a weapons/equipment offense, the code used to designate the offense is the weapon classification followed by the weapon offense number. For example, use of an assault rifle would be a G4 offense. Weapon/equipment offenses are listed below.

Possession (1)

The owning or carrying of equipment or weapons designated as restricted access.

Transport (2)

The act of carrying or transporting said Items, ether on one's person or in a vehicle.

Threat (3)

The act of brandishing a weapon in public, regardless of whether the weapon is used intentionally to threaten (carrying an externally visible weapon. such as a gun stuck through a belt, is considered a threat).

Use (4)

Use of any weapon against living targets, public or private property, and any use in the general vicinity of living targets, public or private property. This offense is concerned only with actual usage, not any harm (or intent to harm) resulting from the weapons use.

Intent (5)

Use of any weapon against living targets, public or private property. and any usage in the general vicinity of living targets, public or private property intended explicitly to cause physical injury or property damage (regardless of whether injury or damage actually occurred).


Weapon and equipment-related offenses are rarely filed alone. They are usually submitted along with other. more serious criminal charges. This ts not to say, however. that they are never filed independently. Law enforcement officers will not hesitate to take the time to charge an individual armed with an assault cannon.

Following is a list of some of the var1ous criminal charges. Other charges do exist, but these are the most common.


The intentional settling on fire of a building or property.


Any threat to cause physical harm or an unsuccessful attempt to do so.


Any illegal beating or touching of another person, either directly or with an object.


The use of threats or violence to acquire goods, money, or services.

Forcible Confinement

The lmpr1sonment or restraint of an individual against his will.


Any use of intentional deception to cause a person to give up property or some legal right.

Illegal Entry

Any intrusion into property, without rightful access, whether overt or clandestine (includes the lesser charge of trespassing),


Using force or fraud to seize and hold or carry off an individual against his will.


Theft: the unlawful taking away of another' s property without consent, and with the intention of depriving him of it. larceny may be broken down into two categories: petty (1 000Y or less), and grand (more than 1,000Y).

Murder 1

First-degree murder. A charge of premeditated murder is difficult to prove, and is thus rarely filed. To be charged with Murder 1. it must be proved that the suspect planned and conspired to kill his victim.

Murder 2

Homicide. Second-degree murder is the charge filed when direct intent to kill is provable, but when it is not possible to prove premeditation. For example. if a bar patron suddenly gets angry. pulls out a gun and shoots the man slotting next to him, the charge is homicide. intent to kill is obvious, but there 1s no indication of premeditation.

Murder 3

Manslaughter. Any action that results in the accidental death of an individual. In cases where death occurs but the intent to kill is not provable, the charge usually drops to manslaughter.


Negligence is the failure to exercise a reasonable amount of care. resulting in the injury or death of another.


Any forced act of sexual intercourse. Statutory rape Jn .. volves viola don of a minor.

Reckless endangerment

Any action, deliberate or accidental, where injury or death is averted only by sheer Juck.


The act of tempting or enticing another individual into wrongdoing,


The buying or selling of illegal or restricted goods.


Any act that results in the betrayal of allegiance, including the levying of war, adhering ro the enemy, and provoking the enemy with aid and ·comfort."


The malicious or ignorant, willful destruction of property.


In some cases, the criminal charge may be tempered by events or plea-bargaining, in which case the charge may be altered by the following conditions.


The accessory charge applies in any case where the individual may not be directly involved in the commission of a crime, but may have given aid to the perpetrators.


Conspiracy involves individuals acting or planning together l'or an unlawful purpose (e.g., conspiracy to commit fraud, conspiracy to commit murder, and so on).


The boundaries that separate the legal jurisdiction of various prosecuting bodies has blurred somewhat slain their Initial establishment more than 275 years ago. Crimes today generally fall under three classifications: federal, corporate, and local.

Federal law enforcement agencies tend to hold the greatest power and are the most free to exercise that power, in most countries federal Jurisdiction covers, computer crime, congressional laws, controlled or restricted-access equipment and materials, corporate crime, crimes committed in federally controlled areas, crimes crossing state lines. crimes involving foreign nationals,. crimes involving government offices, kidnapping, terrorism, and treason.

When the multinational megacorporations were granted partial extraterritorial status tn 2001 , several laws were altered to give these new '"micro-nations· a measure of semi-independence. The megacorporadons do not have the same spectrum of power that federal agencies enjoy, but their legal reach does stretch beyond national borders. Corporate jurisdiction covers crimes involving the corporate body and crimes involving corporate assets or employees. Punishment for violation of corporate laws is wholly the responsibility of the governing corporate board of directors, and thus varies from company to company,

Jurisdiction on the local level is the most vague. For instance, although a local law enforcement department may have a vice squad, the enforcement of controlled substances technically falls under federal jurisdiction. Basically, local law enforcement handles most minor criminal infractions and attempts to keep the peace. Major crimes involving large-scale operations and restricted-access equipment are usually tackled in cooperation with federal authorities or simply handed over to the federal agencies outright. Cities with understaffed police forces usually subcontract out to licensed security companies for essential services. In such cases, employees of the security companies are considered deputized officers of the law for the term of the contract.

Several problems exist within the current three-tiered system of legal jurisdiction, the most obvious being the partial extrateritorial status of megacorporations. Within the actual grounds of a corporation's compound. the laws of the megacorporation are paramount. as long as no crime is committed on or against a federal body. For example, within the Ares Weapons complex it would be no offense to carry a military weapon, even though UCAS considers such possession a crime. Possession is completely legal under Ares· employee/position based legal code as long as the weapon is not used to commit a crime against a federal body or representative, e.g., shooting an FBI agent.

Although this distinction in Jurisdictional is relatively straightforward within the corporate complex. Jurisdictional becomes a dicey situation outside those bounds. That is why the results of confrontation with law enforcement officials will vary within the same sector, depending on whose law enforcement department is encountered. for example, the above Ares "citizen," if stopped by a member of Knight Errant, the Ares enforcement arm, would just be motioned on his way. A UCAS officer or even a Seattle officer, on the other hand, would have him behind bars as soon as possible. Then again, the reverse might occur If the law enforcement official were from Lone Star. This Jurisdictional overlap becomes even more complicated when several companies have major operations within the same area (as happens in most metropolitan centers). Generally, the federal authorities exercise the greatest amount of influence in these "buffer . zones,·with local authorities coming a dose second. (in many Instances local authorities are the corporate authorities, especially in dormitory communities.} However. it is not unknown for megacorporations to press for release of their "'citizens" or to flic for extradition/deportation if it is to their benefit.


Sentencing and punishment vary on the local and federal levels (corporate justice is usually sentenced according to local jurisprudence).

Federal agencies will generally prosecute weapon. injury, and death offenses only if the crime occurred in connection with another crime falling under federal Jurisdiction. Even so. weapons offenses for possession and transport are almost never pursued on a federal level.

The following list of fines and imprisonment terms are the typical Judicial call. Mitigating circumstances may reduce or increase sentences (e.g .. first-time offense versus repeat offender). as might plea-bargainer.

Unless otherwise noted, most sentences include the potential for parole after the offender has served at least 30 percent of the prison term. If parole is granted, the individual must remain on parole for at least another 20 percent of his total sentence.



Amende et peines à SEATTLE













Category A: Small bladed Weapon

100 Y

500 Y

1 000 Y

2 000 Y/2 mois

5 000 Y/6 mois

Category B: Large bladed Weapon

200 Y

800 Y

2 000 Y

5 000 Y/4 mois

10 000 Y/8 mois

Category C: Blunt Weapon

150 Y

650 Y

1 500 Y

3 000 Y/3mois

7 000 Y/8 mois

Category D: Projectile Weapon

300 Y

1 000 Y

2 000 Y

3 000 Y/4 mois

5 000 Y/8 mois

Category l: Pistol

500 Y

1 500 Y

5 000 Y

10 000 Y/1 an

10 000 Y/2 ans

Category f: Rifle

1 000 Y

3 000 Y

8 000 Y

8 000 Y/18 mois

8 000 Y/3 ans

Category G: Automatic Weapon

5 000 Y

10 000 Y

10 000 Y/6 mois

10 000 Y/2 ans

10 000 Y/4ans

Category H: Heavy Weapon

10 000 Y

20 000 Y

20 000 Y/1 an

20 000 Y/4 ans

20 000 Y/10ans

Category I: Explosives

10 000 Y

40 000 Y

40 000 Y/1 an

40 000 Y/4 ans

40 000 Y/10ans

Category J: Military Weapon

10 000 Y/6 mois

10 000 Y/1 an

10 000 Y/2 ans

10 000 Y/8 ans

10 000 Y/20ans

Category K: Military Armor

1 200 Y





Category L: Military Ammunition

3 000 Y





Class A Bioware (BA)

4 000 Y





Class B Bioware (BB)

12 000 Y





Class C Bioware (BC)

12 000 Y/3 ans





Class CA: Class A Cyberware

5 000 Y/3 ans





Category CB: Class B Cyberware

15 000 Y





Category CC: Class C Cyberware

15 000 Y/3 ans





Category CD: Class D Matrlx Technology

8 000 Y/2 ans





Category E1: Class A Equipment

2 000 Y





Category E2: Class B Equipment

4 000 Y





Category E3: Class C Equipment

8 000 Y/2 ans





Category M1: Class A Controlled

500 Y/1 mois





Category M2: Class B Controlled

2 000 Y/1 mois





Category M3: Class C Controlled







Anon 5000/1 an

Assault 2000/1 an

Battery 2500/1 an

Extorsion 2-3 ans

Forcible Confinement 2-5 ans

Fraud 2-5 ans

Illegal Entry 1-5 ans

Kidnapping 5-10 ans

Larceny pretty 2-5 ans

Larceny grand 2-10 ans

Murder 1 30 ans- à vie (pas sur parole)

Murder 2 10 ans- à vie

Murder 3 2-5 ans

Negligence 1-5 ans

Rape 2-5 ans

Rape statuotory 2-10 ans

Reckless endangerment 5000/1ans

Solicitation 2000

Trafficking 25000/2-5 ans

Treason 10 ans – à vie

Vandalism 2000


Accessory 20% normal

Conspiracy 50% normal

'Some jurisdictions maintain the Death Penalty for Murder One. Seattle does not.