In Brief

Roman Polanski jail plea rejected over rape case

Oscar-winning director to remain in self-exile in Paris after LA judge refuses to guarantee he will not serve more time in prison

Roman Polanski has failed in his bid to secure immunity from prison in the US and settle his 40-year-old statutory rape case.

Lawyers for the Oscar-winning film director, who is currently in self-exile in Paris, said he was willing to return to the country and appear in court on condition he would not serve more time in jail, the LA Times says.

However, Los Angeles Judge Scott Gordon turned down the motion, saying the arguments had been presented to previous judges and rejected. "No sufficient or compelling basis for reconsideration of these issues … has been presented," he added.

Polanski, director of such films as The Pianist and Rosemary's Baby, fled the US in 1978, prior to being sentenced after pleading guilty to unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl. He claimed the judge had gone back on his word to sentence him to probation following a psychiatric evaluation.

"Since he fled the US, Polanski's travel has been confined to three countries: France, Switzerland and his native Poland," The Guardian says.

The issue is due to come before the courts in LA again later this month, says the BBC, as Polanski's legal team work to unseal a "controversial" piece of testimony which is "thought to contain allegations of misconduct by the trial judge".

"It is the court case that refuses to die," writes BBC LA correspondent David Willis. "A salacious story, the details of which remain hotly contested some 40 years after they occurred." 

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