L.A. court asked to sentence Polanski in absentia

Wed Jan 6, 2010 6:35pm EST
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Lawyers for Roman Polanski asked a Los Angeles judge on Wednesday to sentence the Oscar-winning film director in his absence on a 1977 charge of having sex with a 13-year-old girl.

Judge Peter Espinoza set a January 22 date for a full hearing on the request by Polanski's Los Angeles-based lawyer Chad Hummel.

Polanski, 76, is under house arrest in Switzerland fighting extradition to the United States. He fled the United States before sentencing in 1978, but after pleading guilty to unlawful sex with a minor, and spent most of the past 30 years living and working in France.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Eric Walsh)