Polanski Wins Calif. Appellate Review of Bias Claim re Child-Rape Case

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A California appeals court has agreed to hear a claim by fugitive film director Roman Polanski that the criminal system has been biased in its handling of a decades-old child-rape case against him.

Staying a planned Wednesday hearing in Los Angeles Superior Court, the 2nd District Court of Appeals has agreed to hear Polanski’s emergency appeal concerning the trial court’s refusal to move the proceedings to another jurisdiction, according to the Associated Press and an earlier L.A. Now blog post published in the Los Angeles Times before the appeal was granted.

Underlying the recusal matter, the trial court has been asked to dismiss the case against Polanski over alleged bias. “Los Angeles prosecutors earlier this month argued the Paris-based Polanski was not entitled to the hearing because he had ‘voluntarily remained a fugitive from justice’ since 1978,” recounts Agence France Presse.

Polanski pleaded guilty to the statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl in the late 1970s, but left the country before sentencing. He now lives as a fugitive in France.

Earlier ABAJournal.com coverage:

1st Surrender, Then Contest 1977 Child-Rape Plea, Gov’t Tells Polanski

Roman Polanski Documentary Puts New Spin on Child Sex Crime

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