Roman Polanski freed after Polish police questioning over historical sex offence: Director fled US on six felony charges in 1977

The film director left America in the Seventies before he could be sentenced for having sex with a minor

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The Independent Online

Roman Polanski has been released after being questioned by Polish police on a US arrest warrant for sexual offence.

The director fled the US in 1977 before he could be sentenced for having sex with a 13-year-old girl.

Krakow prosecutors were contacted by the US authorities asking them to arrest Polanski after he attended for the opening of the Museum of the History of Polish Jews.

“Roman Polanski said he would comply with all requests made by prosecutors in this case and provided his address. Prosecutors therefore decided not to arrest him in connection with a possible US extradition request,” a Polish justice ministry spokesman, Mateusz Martyniuk, said on Thursday.

Martyniuk said the director’s extradition is still possible because “the statute of limitations does not apply to US requests”, but he is currently “a free citizen and is free to travel”.

Polanski was charged with six felony charges in 1977, including rape and sodomy, before accepting a plea deal. He left the country on the eve of his sentencing.

In 2009, he was arrested in Zurich, Switzerland, following a US extradition attempt, but was freed.

He is currently based in France where he is directing stage show The Vampires' Ball, but wants to shoot a film in Poland on the basis that he won’t be extradited.

His victim, Samantha Geimer, now 51, published her account in a book entitled The Girl: A Life Lived in the Shadow of Roman Polanski.