Polanski vows to fight extradition

Imprisoned director Roman Polanski is in a “fighting mood” and will battle U.S. attempts to have him extradited from Switzerland to face justice in California for having sex in 1977 with a 13-year-old girl, his lawyer said Monday.

Roman Polanski

ZURICH, Switzerland — Imprisoned director Roman Polanski is in a “fighting mood” and will battle U.S. attempts to have him extradited from Switzerland to face justice in California for having sex in 1977 with a 13-year-old girl, his lawyer said Monday.

An international tug-of-war over the 76-year-old director escalated Monday as France and Poland urged Switzerland to free him on bail and pressed U.S. officials all the way up to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Polanski was in his third day of detention after Swiss police arrested him Saturday on an international warrant as he arrived in Zurich to receive a lifetime achievement award from a film festival.

Polanski has told Swiss officials that he will contest a U.S. request that he be transferred to the United States, attorney Herve Temime said in an e-mail. Temime said Polanski’s legal team would try to prove that the U.S. request was illegal and that the Oscar-winning director should be released.

“Taking into account the extraordinary conditions of his arrest, his Swiss lawyer will seek his freedom without delay,” Temime said.

He also told France-Info radio that he was able to speak with Polanski from his Zurich cell.

“He was shocked, dumbfounded but he is in a fighting mood and he is very determined to defend himself,” Temime said.

A complicated legal process awaited all sides. While France expressed hope that Polanski would be freed shortly, Swiss officials said there would be no rash decision.

The Swiss Justice Ministry on Monday did not rule out the possibility that Polanski, director of such classic films as Chinatown and Rosemary’s Baby, could be released on bail under very strict conditions.

Justice spokesman Guido Balmer said such an arrangement is “not entirely excluded” under Swiss law and that Polanski could file a motion on bail. But he said Switzerland’s top criminal court would undertake a thorough examination of evidence before deciding on any request.

“This is a legal story,” Balmer said “There is no room for political pressure.”

Authorities in Los Angeles consider Polanski a “convicted felon and fugitive.”

Polanski at the time had pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse and was sent to prison for 42 days of evaluation. Lawyers agreed that would be his full sentence, but the judge tried to renege on the plea bargain.

On the day of his sentencing in 1978, aware the judge would sentence him to more prison time and require his voluntary deportation, Polanski fled to France.

Just Posted

Innisfail Airport to host convention

2019 Canadian Owners and Pilots Association’s event

Woman bitten at Red Deer dog park

Dog owners reminded to control their pets

Red Deer approves 10 cannabis retail stores

Locations approved around the city

Bike thefts becoming ‘significant problem’ in Red Deer

Residents are sounding the alarm on the growing problem of bike theft… Continue reading

Court hearing on Humboldt Broncos fundraising a first under new Saskatchewan law

SASKATOON — A court hearing related to money raised following the Humboldt… Continue reading

WATCH: A horse was neglected by its owner. Now the horse is suing

ESTACADA, Ore. - Justice is an 8-year-old American quarter horse who used… Continue reading

Nebraska executes first inmate using fentanyl

LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska carried out its first execution in more than… Continue reading

Canadian train travellers narrowly avoid deadly Italian bridge collapse

TORONTO — A pair of Canadian student travellers bemoaning what appeared to… Continue reading

Keep bribes quiet for 10 years, FIFA won’t punish you

LONDON — FIFA has officially eradicated corruption. All it took was pressing… Continue reading

Beyoncé honours ailing Aretha Franklin at Detroit concert

DETROIT — Queen Bey dedicated her performance with husband, Jay Z, to… Continue reading

‘Outlaw King’ to open Toronto film fest; ‘Jeremiah Terminator LeRoy’ to close

TORONTO — The world premiere of David Mackenzie’s “Outlaw King,” starring Chris… Continue reading

Male model convicted of murdering rival after online feud

LONDON — A British fashion model has been convicted of murdering a… Continue reading

Red Sox old-timer’s memorabilia going up for sale

BIDDEFORD, Maine — Some items belonging to one of the Boston Red… Continue reading

Rival Korea leaders to meet in Pyongyang in September

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of — The rival Koreas announced Monday that North… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month