Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


Polanski Not Worried About Thai Extradition Law

Polanski Not Worried About Extradition From Thailand


by Richard S. Ehrlich

BANGKOK, Thailand -- Roman Polanski, who recently dodged possible extradition from England to America where he was convicted for illicit sex with a 13-year-old California girl, said he has "no problems" being arrested as a fugitive while traveling to other countries.

Asked at a news conference on Saturday (Oct. 15) why he feared extradition from England but not from Thailand, Polanski replied: "I came here to talk about the motion pictures I presented, and I've been traveling around the world for 20 years."

Polanski was warmly welcomed by Thai officials on Friday (Oct. 14) at the gala opening of the World Film Festival of Bangkok.

"I've been traveling around the world a lot, and working around the world a lot, and I have no problems with it," Polanski said.

"We're not going to extradite him," a U.S. Embassy spokesperson said on Friday (Oct. 14), unable to elaborate.

Describing his newest film, titled Oliver Twist, Polanski said, "I have directed children before, in some parts. This was the first time when they have the lead in the picture, but it was extremely easy."

The film's plot, about exploited orphans, was easily understood by children, he said.

"The most painful thing for a child is the separation from the parents. I know that the harshness of life, lack of food, etcetera, is all secondary. I feel kids can identify with this one."

The filmmaker became a fugitive in 1978 when he fled the United States after being convicted for illegal sex with a 13-year-old San Fernando Valley girl when Polanski was 43.

A grand jury charged Polanski with drugging a minor, committing a lewd act upon a person less than 14, rape of a minor, rape by use of a drug, oral copulation and sodomy -- all felony charges.

He pled guilty to a lesser charge of engaging in unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, and the other charges were dropped, but Polanski fled before sentencing.

In 2004, Polanksi's lawyer Richard Spearman defended the filmmaker's inability to travel to England to give evidence in a libel case against Vanity Fair magazine, and said if "he comes to this country, exposing himself to extradition," Polanski risked arrest.

A British Court of Appeal earlier upheld a ruling that Polanski would have to appear in person, rather than in a video link from his Paris home.

"The court should not be seen to assist a claimant who is a fugitive from justice, to evade sentence for a crime of which he has been convicted," said Lord Justice Jonathan Parker, one of the Court of Appeal's three judges.

"He could be handed over to the U.S. if he comes to Britain, because there is an extradition agreement between the two countries," the British Broadcasting Corp. (BBC) reported at the time.

Polanski later won his right to testify by video link, and won his libel case.

Polanski's 13-year-old rape victim grew up to be a real estate assistant in Hawaii, married, and is now known as Samantha Geimer.

Polanski "got a little scary, and I realized he had other intentions, and I knew I was not where I should be," she told the Honolulu Star-Bulletin in 2003, describing how Polanski lured her to Jack Nicholson's home, fed her champagne and Quaaludes, and "raped" her.

"I said 'no' several times, and then, well, gave up on that."

Academy Award-winning Polanski, 72, directed The Pianist, Chinatown, and other classics. He was born in Paris, raised in Poland, and holds dual Polish and French nationality.

*************

Richard S. Ehrlich, a freelance journalist who has reported news from Asia for the past 27 years, is co-author of the non-fiction book, "HELLO MY BIG BIG HONEY!" -- Love Letters to Bangkok Bar Girls and Their Revealing Interviews. His web page is http://www.geocities.com/asia_correspondent/


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>

ALSO:

Buildup:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>

ALSO:

Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news