Roman Polanski wants 1977 rape case over, attorney tells L.A judge

Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:05pm EDT
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By Dana Feldman

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Fugitive movie director Roman Polanski will have to wait up to three months to hear whether he can resolve his four-decade-old rape case without serving more jail time in the United States.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon on Monday heard arguments from prosecutors and Polanski's lawyer on the latest bid to end the case, but said he would reserve making any decision for up to 90 days.

Attorney Harland Braun asked Gordon to rule that Polanski fulfilled his time behind bars in 1977, when he served 42 days ahead of sentencing for the rape of a 13-year-old girl.

With that assurance, the "Rosemary's Baby" director would fly from Paris immediately to the United States for sentencing, Braun said.

The case of French-Polish Polanski has been a cause celebre for 40 years. Following his guilty plea in 1977 and time in jail, he fled the United States, fearing a plea bargain with authorities at that time would be overruled and that he would get a lengthy jail term.

"He knows what he was promised in the sentencing. He knows the time he's done. He's not trying to bargain," Braun told Monday's hearing.

"Mr. Polanski is 83 and just wants to settle this case, wants it over with. The crime that he committed is indefensible. He's never tried to deny it," he added.

Los Angeles prosecutors, however, said Polanski was asking for special treatment and there should be no discussion on what sentence he would get until he returns to the United States.   Continued...

FILE PHOTO - Filmmaker Roman Polanski walks on a corridor during a break of a court hearing in Krakow February 25, 2015. REUTERS/Kacper Pempel/File Photo