How you handle crime and punishment in your fantasy world is an important aspect of creating a vibrant and real culture. The legal system you create should reflect how society views law generally, as well as the values of society.
This article provides a starting point for considerations of criminal law in your fantasy world.
The Source of Law
At the outset, you should decide where laws originate in your society. This is not necessarily limited to deciding which individuals or bodies make the law. Take it a step deeper. It is useful to examine two broad categories for the ultimate source of law – Divine Right and Natural Law.