Fri, Jul 16, 2010 - Page 7 News List

Polanski’s US lawyers urge probe of California charges

AFP , LOS ANGELES

Lawyers for fugitive film director Roman Polanski on Wednesday called for a “fair and impartial” probe into alleged prosecutorial misconduct that led Polanski to flee the US after pleading guilty to statutory rape 33 years ago.

Switzerland on Monday turned down what it said was a flawed US extradition request for Polanski, releasing him from house arrest.

His lawyers said the extradition request failed to mention testimony in March by a former prosecutor proving that a trial judge in 1977 had agreed to punish Polanski only with time served in a California jail.

Polanski had pleaded guilty to having sex with the underaged girl after plying her with drugs and champagne in 1977. When he found out the judge had reneged on the deal, he fled the country.

US officials on Tuesday said they were “disappointed” with Switzerland’s decision.

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