Swiss await more details from US in Polanski case

12th May 2010, Comments 0 comments

Swiss authorities are still waiting for more information from the United States before they rule on filmmaker Roman Polanski's extradition over a 33 year-old US child sex case, a spokesman said on Wednesday.

"Switzerland is still awaiting supplementary information from the Americans," Swiss justice ministry spokesman Folco Galli told AFP.

"For the moment we have not received it," Galli added.

Polanski is under house arrest in Switzerland pending Bern's decision on whether he should be sent back to the United States to face a trial over the case dating back to 1977.

The director was arrested in Zurich in September 2009 on a US warrant, and was jailed until he won a bid to be put under house arrest at his chalet in the Swiss ski resort of Gstaad while he fights extradition.

A California appeals court quashed a bid last month for him to be tried in absentia.

That had appeared to exhaust his appeals options in the United States and clear the last technical hurdle in the way of a Swiss decision.

Earlier this month, the Oscar-winning director broke his silence on the case, saying in a 900-word statement that US authorities wanted his head "on a platter."

Several filmmakers screening at the Cannes film festival in France this week signed a new petition in support of the Oscar winner.

Among the signatories are Jean-Luc Godard, Agnes Varda, Bertrand Tavernier and Olivier Assayas as well as Chile's Patricio Guzman and Romanian Cristi Puiu.

The petition urged the Swiss authorities to take action to help Polanski, saying "the US request for extradition is based on a lie."

Polanski has insisted he had served the time agreed and that claims to the contrary in the extradition warrant were false.

A Los Angeles judge on Monday dismissed a request by Polanski's lawyers to unseal records they claimed would prove that attempts to extradite the director were based on incomplete information.

Galli gave no further information on the outstanding Swiss request and it was not clear if it was related to those US records.

Polanski is alleged to have given 13-year-old Samantha Geimer champagne and drugs during a 1977 photo shoot at the Hollywood Hills home of actor friend Jack Nicholson before having sex with her despite her protests.

© 2010 AFP

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