The Collector in Guardians of the Galaxy held living beings on display in his “collection.” These beings appeared to be in a conscious stasis, because they could move around in their chambers, but were not aging. Moreover, there was no food or bathroom facilities, which implied they would not need to eat while in the chambers.
The prime evidence that those in the chambers were not aging was a Soviet space dog on display. The Soviet space dog program was conducted in the 1950s and 1960s, meaning Cosmo the space dog had been on display for 50 to 60 years.
That is a long time to wait for someone to throw a tennis ball.
The Collector did not just have a 60 year old dog who could have played fetch with Khrushchev on in his collection, but living beings. These individuals effectively would become ageless, but held in a small cell like a museum exhibit.
The Collector could be subject to the cosmic equivalent of false imprisonment, kidnapping, and torture. Given the fact the Nova Corps had similar legal definitions for theft and murder, universal laws are not limited to gravity.
False imprisonment is when a person confines a person to stay; the confided person did not consent to being retained; and the confinement was accomplished through violence or menace. CALJIC 9.60.
The Collector could be charged and convicted of false imprisonment, because those locked in the display cases were by their very nature confined. It is highly unlikely anyone consented to being on display, as evidenced by the former assistant imprisoned as an example. This is also evidence of the Collector committed acts of violence, given the condition of the former assistant. Moreover, the second assistant stated she was a “slave.”
Kidnapping under common law is the act of forcibly abducting a person from their own country and sending them to another. Black’s Law Dictionary iPad App, 9th Edition.
Living life forms who are abducted from their planet and held within the decapitated head of a Celestial would meet the common law definition of kidnapping, because they had to be removed from their planet and taken in space to the Collector’s base.
There is a strong argument that the life forms held by the Collector were “tortured” in the exhibit chambers. One legal definition of torture is causing suffering for any sadistic purpose. Cal Pen Code § 206. The Collector held “people” in glass chambers without food or any external stimuli for potentially decades or centuries. There was no way for any of them to leave their chambers. This imprisonment could be considered torture, because they were held for the Collector’s extreme obsessive compulsion to collect “people” and imprisonment them beyond their natural lifespan with no chance of escape.
The only way that kidnapping, false imprisonment, and torture could be worse would be forcing all of the prisoners to watch Howard the Duck.