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Giggling Drunk Lawyer Delays Hearing


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Giggling Drunk Lawyer Delays Hearing

By Associated Press

August 9, 2004, 11:01 PM EDT

HONG KONG -- A visibly drunk prosecutor who was giggling uncontrollably prompted a halt in a sentence hearing and later posed for journalists outside the courthouse as Auguste Rodin's sculpture "The Thinker," newspaper reported Tuesday.

A judge was forced to call a two-minute recess after Roderick Murray, a government prosecutor, put on sunglasses, giggled, clapped his hands and drummed his fingers on the desk during the session at Hong Kong's District Court on Monday, the South China Morning Post and the tabloid The Standard reported.

Judge Chua Fi-lan then sought help from a defense lawyer to "assist" Murray in controlling himself, The Standard said.

Murray, who witnesses said smelled strongly of alcohol as he staggered into court, later admitted to reporters that he had consumed two dry martinis and a number of beers before attending the hearing, the Post said.

He then posed outside the courthouse for journalists in imitation of French sculptor Rodin's masterpiece, the newspaper reported.

Judiciary spokeswoman Jamie Or said she had no information about what happened inside the District Court on Monday but she gave The Associated Press a terse response from Chua, who said, "It is correct that Mr. Roderick Murray's (behavior) inside and outside court was bizarre. I (will) deal with the issue in the fullness of time."

Murray, who trained as an attorney at the University of Southampton in Britain, did not immediately return a call from AP seeking comment.

Copyright © 2004, The Associated Press

newsday.com

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