Judge to hear new arguments in long-running Polanski case

Polanski faces court battle over assault resolution

"This case is 40 years old because the defendant fled", Hanisee said, adding that she is confident the director will get a fair hearing. A judge was scheduled to hear new arguments Monday in the 1977 sexual assault case against Polanski.

A judge said Monday he would issue a written ruling on whether fugitive filmmaker Roman Polanski can return to the U.S. without fear of being jailed for having sex with a minor.

Polanski pleaded guilty in 1977 to raping a 13-year-old girl, and was held for 42 days for a psychiatric evaluation at Chino State Prison. Judge Dariusz Mazur wrote a 200-page opinion detailing the failures of the American justice system in the case and calling efforts to extradite Polanski for a full trial "obviously unlawful".

The Oscar-winning filmmaker has been living in Switzerland, France and Poland since fleeing the United States.

Prosecutors however argue Polanski, 83, is trying to dictate terms in the case from afar without risking further time behind bars.

Polanski has previously been arrested on USA warrants in both Poland and Switzerland in the last decade, however both countries declined to extradite him to the US.

Samantha Geimer, who is the victim in the case, has long made clear she believes Polanski's self-imposed exile has been punishment enough.

"The people misunderstood" the request, said Braun; he assured that it was only meant to allow for Polanski's return. According to former prosecutors and lawyers, California Superior Court Judge Laurence Rittenband was concerned about negative press coverage and refused to sentence Polanski to probation, as had been recommended.

Roman Polanski wants to resolve the sexual misconduct conviction that's haunted him for 40 years and visit the Los Angeles grave of actress Sharon Tate, his wife murdered by the Charles Manson family in 1969. "I am only interested in obtaining the Gunson transcript and obtaining a ruling on whether a California court will respect the ruling of the Polish Court", he wrote in a February 21 email, which referred both to the testimony and to a determination in a Polish extradition hearing that Polanski should remain free. "(He) wants answers-but will only show up if he likes the answers", an LA prosecutor told Reuters.

Both sides agree the case that Polanski's case has a freakish legal history, although Braun attributes that to judicial misconduct while Hanisee attributed much of the recent drama to the director's "repeated requests ... for secret hearings and special treatment". That attempt failed when another judge agreed with the district attorney that Polanski would have to come back to the US if he wanted his request to be heard.

"The people's consistent and unwavering position since the day the defendant violated his promise to appear and fled the country is that there will be no discussion what will happen until Mr. Polanski returns", the district attorney's lawyers said in a March 16 filing. Regardless, no transcript of the meeting with the judge exists.

Gordon on Monday said he will issue a written ruling on the matter. Gunson gave the testimony over three days in 2010 in case he was unable to testify at any future proceedings in the case. He received a best director Oscar in 2002 for "The Pianist", but did not attend the Los Angeles ceremony. The director said he wanted the case closed and put in the past for good.

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