IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Judge Denies Roman Polanski's Request for Hearing in Sex Case

Polanski's attorneys sought an evidentiary hearing in the 1977 sexual assault case, but a judge said he had no right to one as a fugitive.
Image: File photo of Roman Polanski
Director Roman Polanski poses with his Best Director award for "La Venus A La Fourrure" (Venus in Fur) during a photocall at the 39th Cesar Awards ceremony in Paris in this file photo taken Feb. 25.REGIS DUVIGNAU / Reuters

A judge in Los Angeles has denied Roman Polanski’s bid for a hearing in the 1977 sexual assault case against him.

Judge James R. Brandlin ruled Wednesday that the Academy Award-winning director was not entitled to an evidentiary hearing because he remains a fugitive. Polanski pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful sexual intercourse in 1977 to settle charges that he had sex with a 13-year-old girl during a photo shoot. He never showed up to a sentencing hearing in that case, court documents say, and he has lived outside of the country ever since.

Polanski’s attorneys sought to dismiss the case in 2008, alleging prosecutorial and judicial misconduct. A judge denied that request, and an appeals court later affirmed the decision. In the new request, Polanski’s attorneys sought an evidentiary hearing in the case, but Brandlin ruled, "Polanski is not entitled to avail himself of this court’s power to hear his demands while he openly stands in an attitude of contempt of a legal order from this very court."

An email to one of Polanski’s attorneys was not immediately returned. Polanski won Academy Awards for the 2002 film "The Pianist" and was nominated for the 1974 film "Chinatown" and the 1979 film "Tess."