Swiss Court Thinks Polanski Has Many Reasons to Escape

Director Roman Polanski fled the U.S. more than 30 years ago and was detained in Switzerland in September.

Director Roman Polanski fled the U.S. more than 30 years ago and was detained in Switzerland in September.

The Swiss Criminal Court said measures such as revoking Polanski's travel documents and requiring him to report daily to the police would not reduce the possibility that the director would flee.

Los Angeles, California, authorities sought his arrest when they learned he would be traveling to Switzerland for a film festival last month, CNN reports.

Bloomberg quoted Swiss Federal Criminal Court Judge Cornelia Cova as saying, “The detention of the accused during the entire extradition proceedings is the rule . This allows Switzerland to meet the obligations of its extradition treaties.”

Polanski, who is married and has two children, already eluded the U.S. criminal process once, by traveling to Europe in 1978, the Swiss court said today. Polanski lives in France and owns property in Gstaad, Switzerland, the court said.

Polanski was first charged on six felony counts alleging he drugged and raped the 13-year-old. He later pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor after the lawyer for the girl’s family asked prosecutors to avoid a jury trial.

Polanski won the Oscar for best director for the 2002 film “The Pianist.” Actor Harrison Ford accepted the award for the fugitive director , Bloomberg reported.

It was also reported, the court said in its ruling Polanski had many reasons to run away if released on bail, including the fact he could face a U.S. jail sentence of up to 50 years which would mean a painful separation from his wife and children, aged 11 and 16.

It cited his lawyer as saying that longer detention could lead to a loss of around $40 million that investors have put up and ruinous damage claims against him if he cannot finish his new movie "The Ghost," due to premiere in February.

The court also said it would be very easy to escape across the border from Switzerland back to his home in France , ABC News reports .

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