We have a wide variety of IC punishments that we (and player characters) can use to enforce the IC laws. These are varied, and it's a punishment fits the crime kinda thing.
Many of you have had a run in with 'The Law'. You might have gotten a fine, or clone death, or maybe something 'worse'.
The thing is, people who are getting in trouble with the law are typically people having a lot of fun and creating a lot of fun for others.
10+ years ago I had a character who was banished. It made sense ICly, but at the same time, it removed me from the game for 3 months, in the sense that my character was stuck outside the dome with no one to RP with except the random NPC that was puppeted for me. This wasn't the most fun experience I've had on Sindome.
We've implemented a number of additional punishments over the years. These are meant to be fun and entertaining, but also not keep you away from the roleplay for long periods of time.
Time Dilation causes you to experience years and years of being locked up, but the actual experience lasts like a day. Allowing you to be 'punished' and for your character to have a real fear of this ever happening again. It gives you a chance to steer your character in a different direction (perhaps from brash no fucks given criminal, to secretive and careful criminal). It gives your character new motiviations and ideas to work with.
Mind Wipes, without going into too much IC detail, blank out some or all of your characters memories, allowing them to get out of a situation where ICly it would make more sense for them to be killed, or perhaps perma-killed by whatever entity they are in super deep with.
Actual prison is another possible punishment that we employ in some situations, using the new prison on Red. We have it setup so that there is some cool RP possibilities there but it's still a very tailored and GM heavy experience and it is only employed on certain occasions.
Banishment is always an option, but it puts a burden on the GMs to provide entertainment while outside the dome.
Cryo is another option. It's like a vacation, but with a very specific time limit. Your character goes into the freeze, Demolition Man style, and comes out with a desire to KNIT. Sometimes we even allow people to be reprogrammed during this process and then become unpaid Cryo Judges for a period of time to 'repay their debt'.
All of these punishments I've mentioned, and many that I haven't due to IC info-- are intended to provide a fun and entertaining punishment for all the cool shit your character did that got them in trouble. We have to balance the IC punishment with the OOC fact that you are a player in a game and want to have fun. However, there are situations where what makes sense from a theme perspective is calls for drastic things (Time Dilation, Mind Wipe, Banishment). We do these things, because we trust you.
We want you to take these experiences and incorporate them into your character. It should change their motivations, their goals, maybe even to an extent, their personality. Roll with the punches and enjoy yourself if you happen into one of these punishments.
Any questions / issues / discussion points on this?