Practice Relating to Rule 100. Fair Trial Guarantees
Section I. Presence of the accused at the trial
Viet Nam’s Criminal Procedure Code (2015), which is applicable to the prosecution of war crimes, states:
Article 61. Defendants
1. Defendants are physical persons or juridical persons tried as per a Court’s decision. The rights and duties of defendants as suspects are executed by their legal representatives according to this Law.
2. Defendants are entitled to:
b) Attend the trial …
Article 290. Defendants’ attendance in the court
1. A defendant must be present in the court as per the Court’s subpoena during the trial. If the defendant is absent not due to force majeure or objective obstacles, he shall be delivered by force to the court. If his absence results from force majeure or objective obstacles, the trial shall be halted.
If the defendant suffers from mental illness or fatal disease, the Judicial panel shall suspend the case until the defendant is cured.
If the defendant absconds, the Trial panel shall suspend the case and request [the] investigation authorities to [search] for him.
2. The court can only hold a trial in absentia in the following [situations]:
a) The defendant has absconded and remains elusive despite the wanted notice;
b) The defendant is on foreign soil and cannot be summoned to the court;
c) The trial panel approves a request for trial in absentia;
d) The defendant’s absence is not because of force majeure or objective obstacles and does not hinder the trial.