Above: A still from the 2008 documentary Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired
BBC News is reporting that famed writer-director Roman Polanski has been taken into custody in Switzerland on a 31-year-old US arrest warrant for having sex with a 13-year-old girl back in 1977. Polanski was traveling from France -- where he fled to 31 years ago to escape a shady judge and possible jail time -- to the Zurich Film Festival to collect a lifetime achievement award. Polanski will now remain in Switzerland to await possible extradition back to the United States, where he was originally indicted on six counts and faced up to life in prison.
Last year Polanski's lawyers filed to have the case dismissed and to have a hearing moved out of an LA court. While the judge agreed that there was misconduct on the part of the original judge, he still found that Polanski would have to return to the United States to apply for a dismissal. Polanski, afraid he'd immediately be arrested as a fugitive, decided not to return. Two years ago the documentary Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired premiered at the Sundance Film Festival (later airing on HBO) and re-opened this case to an audience that wasn't as familiar with what all went down between Polanski and the victim, Samantha Geimer, who, in recent years, has asked the court to drop the charges.