Crime and Punishment in the FTZ

The Free Trade Zone is exactly that. Anything is available here and usually at a very reasonable price. Aztlan makes very sure that there are no obstacles to the importation of just about anything. There is no customs agency in the FTZ. None. Zip. Nada. You can bring in anything from BTLs and Rainbow to autoaquiring, self-propelled rocket launchers. You can sell them all on the same street corner, if you like. Though the locals may have something to say about it, depending on where you are. Everything is legal here and what you do with your money is up to you, as long as you maintain a modicum of control in the City or the corporate zones.

What constitutes a crime here varies greatly from place to place. In the City and La Jolla, it is mostly a matter of asthetics and inconvenience. Don’t make a scene and don’t make trouble for the locals. Selling instruments of destruction, perversion or diversion is done in private behind locked doors. If you are too obvious, you will get squashed. These areas of the city have an image to uphold and they pay a lot of money for that image.

Image is everything in the FTZ. It may not be illegal, but if it is ugly the residents (including the local security) will probably do something about it. Everything has its place. Selling BTL’s in the arcade is a no no, selling them in the dance club is Ok as long as the owner doesn’t mind. No one cares what you do in your apartment as long as it doesn’t destroy the ones on either side.

There are actually BTL store’s in the FTZ. These are real businesses, with ads in the local look-up and all the licenses and stuff that go along with business. However, you won’t find these stores in the Valley or along Birdrock in La Jolla because the local chamber of commerce (not to mention organized crime and law enforcement) will make things uncomfortable for a store owner that doesn’t fit into the area. Again, everything has its place. The key to operating, and surviving, in the FTZ is to know your place, know the place you are in, and make sure that if the two are different you don’t attract unwanted attention. When in Rome…