Your Polanski Case FAQ

Including the big one—why now?
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 29, 2009 12:27 PM CDT
Film director Roman Polanski is seen as he leaves court in this Oct. 25, 1977 file photo taken in Santa Monica, Calif.   (AP Photo/Nick Ut, File)
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(Newser) – Scratching your head over this Roman Polanski business? Don’t worry, we’re here to help. Here are some common questions and answers, courtesy of Slate:

  • Why didn’t the French ever arrest the guy? Born in Paris, he's one of their own. France doesn’t have to extradite its citizens, and typically doesn’t except for especially heinous crimes.
  • Why did the Swiss do it now? Because the US asked them to, possibly spurred to do so after Polanski moved to have his criminal charges dropped in December.

  • Hasn’t the statute of limitations run out? Nope. Polanski was charged with a crime within the allotted time period. He just ran away before sentencing.
  • What’s this about judicial misconduct? An assistant DA met with the judge and convinced him to ditch Polanski’s plea agreement and send him to prison. That violated California ethics rules, which forbid judges to talk to one side without the other present.