A court in the southern province of Tra Vinh is investigating a video that shows one of its judges apparently falling asleep during a trial last week, local media reported.
A source from Tra Vinh People’s Court said the man in question is Nguyen Van Gioi. He was a member of a panel hearing a lawsuit on land use violations on Friday.
Gioi told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper he came back late from a party the previous night so he was tired during the morning trial.
He said he "only shut my eyes for several seconds.”
The video shows him leaning backwards in his chair for at least one minute, his head tilted to one side and his eyes closed. He was one of the three judges at the trial but not the presiding one.
It is unknown who took the video.
Gioi said some journalists must have posted the video as an attempt to smear because he was strict about entry for reporters into his court.
Ngo De, another judge in the panel, said Gioi did not sleep through the whole trial.
“Because when the presiding judge asked him if he had any comments, he did reply ‘No’,” De said.