Should Roman Polanski Be Held Accountable to His Own Guilty Plea?

As noted in today's links, film director Roman Polanski was arrested over the weekend in Zurich and is being held in Switzerland pending an extradition request from the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.

In 1978, Polanski pled guilty to unlawful sex with a minor (a 13-year-old girl who he gave drugs and booze to and who testified she had repeatedly said no during the act) and then skipped out of the country before his sentencing. For details and context surrounding the Polansky case, read Bill Wyman's eviscerating review of the 2008 documentary, Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired. Wyman argues convincingly that the film whitewashes the details of the rape and is essentially an apologia for the famous director. Which means the film is of a piece with much of the media's treatment of Polanski (typically as a deeply troubled but ultimately misunderstood sprite;see image, for example).

The Los Angeles Times has published a strange piece attacking California's justice system for bothering to go after Polanski in times of fiscal crisis:

With the state Legislature forced to make dramatic cuts in the prison budget and a three-judge federal panel having recently ordered California lawmakers to release as many as 40,000 inmates in response to the scandalous overcrowding of the California state prison system, it seems like an especially inauspicious time for the L.A. County district attorney's office to be spending some of our few remaining tax dollars seeing if it can finally, after all these years, put Roman Polanski behind bars.

Whole thing here. This strikes me  as an incredibly lame argument (indeed, it's simply the inverse of the old Washington monument ploy, when the feds respond to any potential cut in revenue by claiming they will have to shut down the Washington monument first) and one predicated upon an overriding empathy for an artiste who is perceived as having been unfairly hounded into self-imposed exile due to uptight bourgeois morality. I'm curious as to whether the LA Times would be similarly disposed if the guilty party had been, say, a Catholic priest? Or whether, as Patterico notes, the Times would describe a priest who had pled guilty merely as "accused of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl," as the Times just did in a headline? 

There are arguments against continuing to pursue Polanski, not least of which is the fact that he made a civil settlement with his now-middle-aged victim who has publicly forgiven him. So some measure of restitution has been acheived. But the idea that California is in a budget crisis surely isn't a legitimate reason to forego legal action against a non-consensual crime.

Update: In shocking conformity to Hollywood uber Alles mentality, HuffPost bloggers line up squarely behind Polanski. Examples:

Arresting Roman Polanski the other day in Zurich, where he was to receive an honorary award at a film festival, was disgraceful and unjustifiable....

The 13-year old model "seduced" by Polanski had been thrust onto him by her mother, who wanted her in the movies. The girl was just a few weeks short of her 14th birthday, which was the age of consent in California. (It's probably 13 by now!) Polanski was demonized by the press, convicted, and managed to flee, fearing a heavy sentence.

I met Polanski shortly after he fled America and was filming Tess in Normandy. I was working in the CBS News bureau in Paris, and I accompanied Mike Wallace for a Sixty Minutes interview with Polanski on the set. Mike thought he would be meeting the devil incarnate, but was utterly charmed by Roman's sobriety and intelligence.

Joan Z. Shore, Women Overseas for Equality

The story of what Polanski suffered even before the unspeakable trauma of having his pregnant wife Sharon Tate butchered in the spooky twilight of the turbulent Sixties makes me believe that overall, he's as much victim as predator himself. 

Can you imagine living in the Krakow ghetto during the Nazi Occupation, and at the tender age of ten watching both your parents shuttled off to concentration camps, only to have your mother die in one?...

I can't help musing that here in America, we drove away Chaplin for all those years, and though Polanski's crime was much harsher and more defined, I, for one, would welcome having him back among us once he's paid his debt to society. Maybe he could even help us make better movies again.

Of course, the diminutive Pole has had his share of stinkers (example: 1988's Frantic was most ordinary)....

John Farr, "Writer, editor and lecturer on timeless film" (actual bio line at HuffPost)

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  • ||

    It's not like the guy did something monstrous, like taking pictures of his toddlers in the bath. Lighten up.

  • Pete Peeve||

    But the idea that California is in a budget crisis surely isn't a legitimate reason to forego legal action against a non-consensual crime.

    The word you want there is "forgo." "Forego" means "go before."

  • ||

    The real crime here is "Getting Away With It" and the agents of authority are obligated to hound him to the ends of the earth.

  • ||

    My first reaction was: Give me a break, hasn't the statute of limitations run on this? The trope that he is merely "accused" is almost universal.

    Then I found that he had actually pled guilty, and fled to avoid sentencing. I have less of a problem with tracking him down in that case.

  • ||

    Weirdly it's been reported in loads of papers (e.g. London Times) that he was merely accused, when he'd pleaded guilty.

    That's why I don't pay for newspapers.

  • ||

    RAPIST!!!

  • Abdul||

    Sorry, Roman, but when you get Nick Gillespie pounding the table for more law & order, you lost the fight.

  • ||

    J'accuse!

    Commit bad crime, plead guilty, go to jail.

    The media has been absolutely sick about this case. 'Cause he's an artist he gets to molest a young girl? "That Roman--so crazy. But man, did I love me some Chinatown!"

  • Brett||

    I read something about the judge changing the plea bargain he had agreed to, or some prosecutorial misconduct? Is that part of the whitewashing or does it have merit? Posted in case others here have more info on-hand. Just interested, not that it excuses drugging and ass-raping a 13 year old.

  • Jozef||

    I've read that part of his plea bargain was a 90-day psychiatric treatment, from which he escaped after 45 days. Couldn't be arsed to check for truth, though. The way I see it is that he is a fugitive from the law. That doesn't mean he's a fugitive from justice, though; as this site and many others have demonstrated so often, the sex offender laws in the US are unjust. I would've done the same thing he did if I were in his shoes.

  • ||

    The media has been absolutely sick about this case. 'Cause he's an artist he gets to molest a young girl? "That Roman--so crazy. But man, did I love me some Chinatown!"

    Indeed. I cooked to perfection an immaculate fillet mignon the other night - totally got me off the assault charge when I glassed a guy in the pub. ;-)

  • ||

    IIRC, he drugged and raped a thirteen year old girl, pled guilty, then fled the country to avoid sentencing.

    Is anyone seriously proposing adding Hollywood celebs to the LEO community and disgraced governors as prople who are not to be held accountable for their actions?

  • Wicks Cherrycoke||

    Not to excuse him, but has there been any suggestion that he has repeated his crimes in the over thirty years that he has been in France? If not, doesn't that undermine the stereotype that child molesters harbor "uncontrollable" desires, are "beyond rehabilitation," and need to be monitored and Megan's-lawed in perpetuity?

  • ||

    I would've done the same thing he did if I were in his shoes.

    If you were "in his shoes" -

    a) you would never have had the opportunity to flee the country.
    b) you would be such a fucking asshole, I'd toast your incarceration with the good stuff.

  • Abdul||

    If not, doesn't that undermine the stereotype that child molesters harbor "uncontrollable" desires, are "beyond rehabilitation," and need to be monitored and Megan's-lawed in perpetuity?

    Maybe it reinforces the stereotype that a child molestor who has already cut himself off from half the civilized world isn't about to tempt fate by pissing off the one country that's running interference for him.

  • Mike M.||

    When I was in college 20 years ago, the leftist and feminist cabals running the place constantly drummed it into our young, horny male heads that rape was one of the absolute worst crimes a man could commit, and I agree with them. They even went so far as to drum it into us that sex with an intoxicated woman could potentially be considered rape.

    I find it hard to believe their opinions on the subject have really changed, so I'm left to wonder what it is that's so special about Roman Polanski to the scum-sucking gutter rats at the L.A. Times.

  • ||

    Perhaps he learned from the Michael Jackson school of molestation--pay early and often. I wouldn't bet much that he hasn't done something like that again.

  • ||

    Mike M.,

    But he directed Chinatown, you heathen! He's beyond your quaint bourgeois morality.

  • JB||

    Two lessons learned from the Democrats in this past election:

    1. Women should not be taken seriously.

    2. It's ok to torture children (i.e. it's wrong to fire state troopers for tasering children).

    Here, the media is saying that it's ok to rape children as long as the media likes you.

  • ||

    Same question, different thread:

    Was Polanski nabbed for the original rape, or for fleeing the country to evade punishment?

  • ||

    Why didn't Cheney's hit squad go to France and snatch Polanski? Does this mean Democrats love children more than Republicans?

  • Kevin||

    Add this to the list of "for thee but not for me" offenders.
    Al Gore: Smaller cars and houses for thee, but not for me.
    Charlie Rangel: Tax laws for thee, but not for me.
    Ted Kennedy: Jail for thee, but not for me.
    Barack Obama: Public schools for thee, but not for me. Also, jail time for drug use for thee, but not for me.
    Tim Geithner: Tax laws for thee, but not for me (revisited).
    Michael Moore: Wealth distribution for thee, but not for me.

    Add to the list any number of crooked cops we've read about on H&R. Is there any wonder where the general piss-offedness in the country is coming from?

  • robc||

    P Brooks,

    He was nabbed because Switzerland has a treaty with the US. As far as the nabbing goes, Switzerland doesnt care why. He has an extradition hearing in Switerland and your question may matter on that day.

  • ||

    Not to defend Polanski, but let's not forget that the man had his wife brutally murdered by the Manson Gang. That's got to fuck your head up something good.

  • ||

    What a discrace! How does a grown man get his mind around having sex with a child ....and think that he would actually get away with it!

    Men do not think about how this childs life will be ruined by this horrible, horrific, fearful, invasive act. I think that 10 big men in prison should rape him in the ass and let him see what it feels like!

    RAPIST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • ||

    Sadly, Anne Applebaum, whom I generally like, seems to think Polanski should get off because his parents were Holocaust victims.

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/postpartisan/2009/09/the_outrageous_arrest_of_roman.html

  • ||

    This is an outlier case for any point of view. If he wasn't famous, no one would be defending him. But, if he wasn't famous, the California DA wouldn't be still trying to get him. How many rapists who skip out on sentencing get chased for 30+ years?

    Excusing his actions on the grounds he had hard life is laughable, but being a fugitive for 30+ years, even with the fame and money, was probably more punishment than sentence a famous rich director with a psychiatric defense would have gotten in the first place.

  • Rimfax||

    Kevin gets my vote for win.

  • ||

    SugarFree,

    If he'd been Orenthal the Bus Driver, he'd have been sent back long ago.

  • Rimfax||

    anonymous gets my vote for irony award for invoking prison rape. ♪If you think it's trollage, but it's not....♪

  • ||

    I wouldn't bet much that he hasn't done something like that again.

    Apparently he claimed in his autobiography to have 1st nailed Nastasia Kinski when she was 15. Although that might've been 13 depending on her date of birth ...

  • ||

    Pro Libertate,

    Yes, that too. He should have just done the time and all would have been forgiven, just like Victor Salva.

    Hollywood will forgive any crime, as long as you don't vote Republican.

  • Brett||

    mitch, that's a simplification of Applebaum's article.

  • ||

    Does anyone know what the *current* penalty for raping a 13 year-old is in California? Maybe if it's a serious amount of time, Polanski apologists would understand why so many people want him jailed.

  • ||

    NutraSweet, let's not compare Salva with Polanski. Polanski actually has talent.

  • ||

    Does Hollywood give him a pass for being a director or for being in their eyes an auteur? In other words, would Bay get similar treatment?

    Definitely, if Polanski were a outspoken conservative (or, God forbid, a libertarian), he'd have been jailed years ago.

  • ||

    Polanski actually has talent.

    That goes to my point. If a no-talent molester like Salva can get a job from Disney a couple of years out of jail, then Polanski should have let himself been sentenced and gone on with his life.

    Here's the kid Salva molested. Remind you of anyone?

  • ||

    (or, God forbid, a libertarian)

    And Lefiti and friends would come by with "Libertarians are child molesters, like Roman Polanski!"

  • ||

    Love this from the update:

    Mike thought he would be meeting the devil incarnate, but was utterly charmed by Roman's sobriety and intelligence.

    He was charming and intelligent! It's all OK!

    Must remember that.

  • ||

    being a fugitive for 30+ years, even with the fame and money, was probably more punishment than sentence a famous rich director with a psychiatric defense would have gotten in the first place.

    Seeing as he volunteered to be a fugitive, I'm not terribly sympathetic.

    The 13-year old model "seduced" by Polanski had been thrust onto him by her mother, who wanted her in the movies.

    Fascinating to read that raped = "seduced" now. Have to keep that in mind.

    And that having a thirteen-year-old pimped to you by her mother makes it all OK.

    Does anyone know what the *current* penalty for raping a 13 year-old is in California?

    Assuming he's extradited, I believe the next item on his dance card is sentencing hearing. Which raises an interesting legal question: Will they apply the sentencing guidelines in effect now, or the ones in effect back when he "seduced" the little prostitot?

  • ||

    The fact that the Huff Post bloggers are, en masse, willing to excuse and dissemble on behalf of a celeb that raped a 13 year old girl, is, if anything, a succinct demo of the degree of conformity of opinion within liberal circles. You would think in such an egregious case, which has virtually no political relevant, you might find some degree of dissent, but no, EVEN THEN, everyone falls into the party line, regardless of how self-evidently absurd and immoral it is.

  • Joe M||

    Taste the sweetness of the moral relativism. In fact, I think this goes beyond that; call it moral incoherence.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    @mitch
    Great find. I particularly loved the convoluted logic of the examples given of how "he has paid for the crime in many, many ways: In notoriety, in lawyers' fees, in professional stigma. He could not return to Los Angeles to receive his recent Oscar. He cannot visit Hollywood to direct or cast a film."

  • Joe M||

    prostitot



    Now that's pedertastic.

  • ||

    Not to excuse him, but has there been any suggestion that he has repeated his crimes in the over thirty years that he has been in France? If not, doesn't that undermine the stereotype that child molesters harbor "uncontrollable" desires, are "beyond rehabilitation," and need to be monitored and Megan's-lawed in perpetuity?

    Yes, there has. I'm not too familiar with them, but there were some stories going around about involvement with young models in France. I think they were hushed up by the French media, but the rumors linger.

  • ||

    Just to be clear... he fucked a drugged 13-year in the ass. He should go to jail.

    But as a cultural trainwreck, the whole thing is fascinating.

  • ||

    And Polanksi slept with Kinski, as noted above. Even though she might have been 15, she looked much younger.

  • ||

    I find it hard to believe their opinions on the subject have really changed, so I'm left to wonder what it is that's so special about Roman Polanski Ted Kennedy to the scum-sucking gutter rats at the L.A. Times.

  • Kevin||

    He cannot visit Hollywood to direct or cast a film.
    Neither can I. Apparently I too am paying a heavy price for some crime of which I am not aware.

  • ||

    Maybe it reinforces the stereotype that a child molestor who has already cut himself off from half the civilized world isn't about to tempt fate by pissing off the one country that's running interference for him.



    Which, again, would show that there's at least some rational calculation there.

  • ||

    If he goes to jail, how will we get another Frantic? Why do you hate art, NutraSweet?

  • ||

    "he has paid for the crime in many, many ways: In notoriety, in lawyers' fees, in professional stigma. He could not return to Los Angeles to receive his recent Oscar.

    Ahh yes, the "professional stigma" of making several films and winning an Oscar. That's worse than the blacklist, I tells ya!

  • @||

    "we drove away Chaplin for all those years"

    And Johnny Depp! And Gwyneth Paltrow!

  • Thom||

    As I understand it, he pleaded guilty because he worked out a deal whereby he would be sentenced to time served. When the judge made it known that he was going to throw the book at him and ignore the deal that was reached is when Polanski fled.

    It seems doubtful that Polanski would have pleaded guilty had he not been offered a deal, so the whole "he pleaded guilty but couldn't do the time" argument doesn't wash with me.

  • T||

    He was charming and intelligent! It's all OK!

    Must remember that.


    So, most of us around here are screwed because we fail on that "charming" thing.

    In any event, you don't get to claim you're innocent when you plead guilty. The time to jump ship and flee was before the guilty plea.

  • ||

    he fucked a drugged 13-year in the ass.

    Correction: He fucked a drugged 13-year-old in the ass, while she pleaded with him to stop.

  • ||

    All jokes aside, his MacBeth is fucking great.

  • ||

    It's true.

    He may be appalling, but that's a gerat movie.

  • Invisible Finger||

    What's Gary Glitter's opinion?

  • BakedPenguin||

    If the Hollywood lefties are arguing that he should go free because he has/had talent, they should be forced to watch Knife in the Water.

  • ||

    That's highly unlikely, and where did that information come from? The prosecution? No way. Polanski? And he's credible how? Hasn't he admitted to sex with other underage girls? Like Nastassja Kinski?

    We're not talking about a consensual act with a girl who turns 18 next week.

  • Tomcat1066||

    You know, all this excusing of a child rapist from the left almost has me wondering what they're saying over at feministing.

    Not enough to actually go look, but still...

  • ||

    "That Mary Lou is looking HOT!!"

    "Dude, she's like 14 years old"

    "Yeah, FINALLY!"

  • T||

    It seems doubtful that Polanski would have pleaded guilty had he not been offered a deal, so the whole "he pleaded guilty but couldn't do the time" argument doesn't wash with me.

    How about the whole "he pled guilty, so fuck him" argument? That's the one I'm going with. You plead guilty to raping a 13 year old, I don't have any problem with what the judge decides to do after that. You've admitted your commission of a fairly horrific crime in a court of law. Oh, you thought you were gonna get a sweetheart deal because you're famous? Too bad for you, idiot boy. Don't rape children and this won't be a problem.

  • ||

    As I understand it, he pleaded guilty because he worked out a deal whereby he would be sentenced to time served. When the judge made it known that he was going to throw the book at him and ignore the deal that was reached is when Polanski fled.


    Given the amount of bullshit that's been concocted in defense of Polanski, I'm pretty sceptical of this too.

    First it was an "affair with an underage girl", along with lies about her age. Then he "seduced" her (as if drugging and overpowering a child is a form of "seduction"). Then it was her mom "pimping her out" - as if that means anything. Then it was "he's had such a hard life!". The list goes on ...

  • ||

    Tomcat, they are strangely silent on the subject. There were a few posts back in June '08, nothing recent.

  • Invisible Finger||

    I wonder what the HuffPo opinion on John Phillips is? I can't bring myself to actually look.

  • ||

    People! WTF?
    It's all about incentives. If we start jailing the Rich and Famous for their little indiscretions -- WHY would anyone want to be rich and famous? They'd all just remain gray little proles like you people.

  • ||

    I, for one, am gratified (for lack of a better word) to see a similar level of outrage for Polanski's past crimes as for Kennedy's.

    And I concur with Epi, re: Macbeth.

  • Tomcat1066||

    Kant,

    Funny how feminism is all against women being oppressed by men, but when they finally have a man who literally DID oppress a female, against her will after drugging her, they don't say shit?

    It's pathetic as hell.

  • ||

    lecturer on timeless film

    GTFO!1!

  • ||

    Jezebel is silent as well. But they do have a scathing expose about getting kicked in the ladyparts.

    To be fair, I've never seen either of by website bete noirs defend Polanksi. They mostly have the "He's a kiddie diddler, he should go to jail" stance.

  • ||

    I did my time, Polanski can do his too! God Damnit!

  • Sean W. Malone||

    And Hazel Meade proves to be the only actually feminist woman to talk about the issue today..... Well done, miss.

  • Abdul||

    If they love Polanski so much, would Joan Shore and John Farr send their daughters over to his house for a happy thirteenth (almost fourteenth!) birthday party with some R. Kelley music, wine, & qualudes?

    C'mon, the guy's lonley after Nazis and the Manson gang murdered his family.

  • ||

    Whoops! Overlooked this. Sorry, Jezzies.

  • ||

    I blame the Beatles.

  • ||

    If you were a 13 year old girl, would you rather live in Gaza or at Roman Polanski's house?

  • ||

    would you rather live in Gaza or at Roman Polanski's house?

    Would there be cake?

  • ||

    Whoops! Overlooked this. Sorry, Jezzies.

    Yeah, and they do tag him with "Dirt Bags", to be fair.

  • ||

    Uh, half the most wanted list is just random assholes who disappeared 15 years ago.

    There might not be some hard boiled detective staying up at night searching for everybody who fled sentencing, but it's not like the system just forgets.

  • Warty||

    What the fuck, no Underzog?

  • ||

    What the fuck, no Underzog?

    No dogs no deal for zoggy.

  • ||

    What the fuck, no Underzog?

    Nazi conspiracy!

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Godwined.

  • Warty||

    But they do have a scathing expose about getting kicked in the ladyparts.

    "You guys think you're so great!?!? Well, we ALSO hurt when we get kicked in the junk, you fascists!"

  • Warty||

    I swear, if you dogfucking homosexual Rhoemites are keeping Underzog away from me, I'll gas you all.

  • ||

    I, for one, am gratified (for lack of a better word) to see a similar level of outrage for Polanski's past crimes as for Kennedy's.

    Most reasonoids are intolerant assholes, just not hypocritical intolerant assholes. Regardless of politics, there's not a lot of sympathy for killers, thieves and rapists around here.

  • Steve Smith||

    STEVE SUPPORT ROMAN. STEVE MAKE ANAL RAPE ON DAILY BASIS. STEVE DO NOTHING WRONG. STEVE SMASH SWITZERLAND! SMASH!

  • Tony||

    Newsflash to perverts and tax cheats: you can't hide in neutral Switzerland... Times have changed... Better to be the Obama Cabinet.

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    How many rapists who skip out on sentencing get chased for 30+ years?



    I'm sure they'd go after the not-famous fugitive, too, if they noticed him. Being famous just made Polanski more noticeable.

  • ||

    Newflash to Tony:

    (a) Real, real classy using this as an opportunity to shill.

    (b) The DoJ put in this request in 2005.

    (c) Switzerland (or at least some cantons) does not have extradition for financial crimes.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Looked through the thread but did not notice, did anybody but me see the victim and her mother on Larry King over 10 years ago (I think)?

    IIRC, the victim was claiming not to be an actual victim, that she was willing (which does not matter if the victim is 13 anyway). I may be misremembering and sounds opposite of what she testified to (that from memory also).

    For another questionable forum, Playboy did a long artical about this after Polanski was already hiding out in France, but not too long after the trial. I think they were apoligising for him already.

  • ||

    Yeah the whole artist thing pisses me off...I love his films and many of them were made after he plead guilty...still i don't see how that can cloud the fact that he is a convicted rapist.

    Is it so hard to put and artist you like into jail for committing a violent crime?

  • Mad Max||

    Polanski's crime has to be really bad if it prompts so many libertarians to take up the cudgels for uptight, repressive bourgeois morality.

    'Not to defend Polanski, but let's not forget that the man had his wife brutally murdered by the Manson Gang. That's got to fuck your head up something good.'

    The thing is, there are all too many people in this world whose family members were brutally murdered, and most of these folks manage not to rape 13-year-old girls.

    What kind of message are we sending to Holocaust survivors and other murder survivors when we tell them, 'it's good that you didn't rape little girls, but we would certainly understand if you had.' That's kind of, you know, offensive.

    And if Polanski's life experiences made him want to fight back, maybe he could have moved to Israel and joined the army or intelligence services, where he would have had many opportunities to fight against jew-killers. Or he could have done a John Walsh and dedicated himself to tracking down murderers.

    The 13-year-old whom he raped didn't kill Polanski's family. Sheesh.

    'Hollywood will forgive any crime, as long as you don't vote Republican.'

    Or give the government about Stalinist operatives.

  • ||

    How many rapists who skip out on sentencing get chased for 30+ years?

    If he was not famous he would have been caught much earlier...i really don't think the folks at interpol or the French local police have a problem with US officials conducting illegal extradition of convicted rapists. They probably help in most cases.

  • Abdul||

    IIRC, the victim was claiming not to be an actual victim, that she was willing (which does not matter if the victim is 13 anyway). I may be misremembering and sounds opposite of what she testified to (that from memory also).

    Apparently, the victim got a civil settlement, and has publicly stated that she forgives him, and doesn't want him punished anymore.

    St. Maria Goretti was raped when she was 13. As she was dying from the injuries, she prayed for her rapist's forgiveness. That says a lot more about the compassion of the victim then it says about whether the rapist ought to be punished.

  • Kate Harding||

    Roman Polanski raped a child. Let's just start right there, because that's the detail that tends to get neglected when we start discussing whether it was fair for the bail-jumping director to be arrested at age 76, after 32 years in "exile" (which in this case means owning multiple homes in Europe, continuing to work as a director, marrying and fathering two children, even winning an Oscar, but never -- poor baby -- being able to return to the U.S.). Let's keep in mind that Roman Polanski gave a 13-year-old girl a Quaalude and champagne, then raped her, before we start discussing whether the victim looked older than her 13 years, or that she now says she'd rather not see him prosecuted because she can't stand the media attention. Before we discuss how awesome his movies are or what the now-deceased judge did wrong at his trial, let's take a moment to recall that according to the victim's grand jury testimony, Roman Polanski instructed her to get into a jacuzzi naked, refused to take her home when she begged to go, began kissing her even though she said no and asked him to stop; performed cunnilingus on her as she said no and asked him to stop; put his penis in her vagina as she said no and asked him to stop; asked if he could penetrate her anally, to which she replied, "No," then went ahead and did it anyway, until he had an orgasm.

    Can we do that? Can we take a moment to think about all that, and about the fact that Polanski pled guilty to unlawful sex with a minor, before we start talking about what a victim he is? Because that would be great, and not nearly enough people seem to be doing it.

  • Abdul||

    i really don't think the folks at interpol or the French local police have a problem with US officials conducting illegal extradition of convicted rapists. They probably help in most cases.

    Oh, the French care. Who knows why, but they do.

    Google "Ira Einhorn."

  • DADIODADDY||

    hasn't France been punished enough by having RP living there for 30 years? Even they don't deserve that kind of treatment. Let the Swiss deport him to Germany, see how they like it....

  • DADIODADDY||

    If he was an RC priest he'd be hounded to the gates of hell...

  • ||

    Watching "Dog" the bounty hunter try and get around in france on his trail would've quite amusing one suspects.

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    Watching "Dog" the bounty hunter try and get around in france on his trail would've quite amusing one suspects.



    Almost, but not quite, as funny as when Dog skipped bail in Mexico.

    Still, I'd turn on the TV to see it.

  • DADIODADDY||

    I heard that the girl volunteered to sacrifice her ass to get him to flee the country.

  • adam Right||

    Well, I watched The View this am and they mentioned something important that Roman did admit he had sex with the 13 year old girl; however, he was not charged with rape as the girl might not have been forced? Not sure exactly what truly happened. Still, what he did was wrong, even if it was long ago, he still was made responsible for this…

  • max hats||

    Throughout the web, I've been astounded by how many people think he shouldn't be punished for drugging and raping a child. It's disgusting.

    The fact that the Huff Post bloggers are, en masse, willing to excuse and dissemble on behalf of a celeb that raped a 13 year old girl, is, if anything, a succinct demo of the degree of conformity of opinion within liberal circles.



    It's not that their liberals, it's that they're readers of the Huffington Post, which is more of a celebrity gossip mag than it is a political vehicle. A lot of people, maybe even most people in this country, believe it's perfectly fair for the rich and famous to have a better time with the law than the common people.

    If anything, this demonstrates that a lot of the "leftists" in this country aren't really leftist at all.

  • B||

    "There are arguments against continuing to pursue Polanski, not least of which is the fact that he made a civil settlement with his now-middle-aged victim who has publicly forgiven him. So some measure of restitution has been acheived."

    Nonsense. Forgiveness should not be a mitigating factor when one has broken a criminal law, and it never should be. Those laws are not in place merely for those victimized. They are also in place to protect everyone else from scumbags like Polanski.


    "This is an outlier case for any point of view. If he wasn't famous, no one would be defending him. But, if he wasn't famous, the California DA wouldn't be still trying to get him. How many rapists who skip out on sentencing get chased for 30+ years?"

    It he weren't famous, he wouldn't have been able to traipse around the world for 32 fucking years without being arrested. And there also wouldn't be newspaper columnists coming up with laughable apologies for a guy who raped someone he had drugged. The whole bullshit "we are only going after him because he is famous" "argument" is completely fucking irrelevant. The man broke the fucking law and has been a fugitive for 32 fucking years. Perhaps the DA should have dropped the case 1 day after he fled, because heaven forbid some ignorant fuck might claim we are only going after a child rapist because he is famous. Now that I think about it, going after Polanski for three decades because he drugged and sodomized someone against her will and then fled is a scathing indictment of our legal system. Seriously, it is hard not to laugh when someone "argues" that the rich and famous have it tougher under the American legal system.

    And asking Switzerland to arrest the guy when he lands in Zurich hardly qualifies as "chasing" him.

  • Colin||

    He didn't just rape a 13-year-old, he sodomized her, too.

    Interestingly, Poland came out in his defense at the same time they approved castration as a punishment for pedophiles.

    I say send him to Poland.

  • B||

    I guess it is only a matter of time before the French name a street Rue de Polanski.

  • Brian Lockwood||

    All the articles I've read say he only plead guilty to statutory rape charges. Does anyone know why he was never charged with aggravated rape (or whatever charge goes along with drugging and sodomizing a 13 year old against her will)?

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Not to defend Polanski, but let's not forget that the man had his wife brutally murdered by the Manson Gang.

    He did that too? How much did he pay for the hit? This makes OJ something of a copycat doesn't it?

  • Michael Ejercito||

    They even went so far as to drum it into us that sex with an intoxicated woman could potentially be considered rape.


    If the intoxication level is high enough, yes.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    If the intoxication level is high enough, yes.

    Then why did she keep ordering expensive drinks on my tab? Huh?

  • ||

    Does anyone know why he was never charged with aggravated rape (or whatever charge goes along with drugging and sodomizing a 13 year old against her will)?

    He *was* charged. Under the plea bargain, those charges were dropped in exchange for his plea of guilty to the lesser offense.

  • Rachel||

    @ Hazel re:McKenzie Phillips

    I don't know about bloggers on HuffPo, but many commenters there seem to think that Phillips made it up for book publicity now that he's dead and can't defend himself. There are also those who say if it was consentual, she should keep her mouth shut. (Same thoughts on DU.)

  • Robespierre Johnson||

    A bas les artistes!

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Then why did she keep ordering expensive drinks on my tab? Huh?


    We know that intoxicated people can sometimes be legally liable for their actions. After all, intoxication is not a defense against DUI.

  • ||

    Can you imagine living in the Krakow ghetto during the Nazi Occupation, and at the tender age of ten watching both your parents shuttled off to concentration camps, only to have your mother die in one?...

    Living well is the best revenge. And that includes non-consensual sex with teenage girls.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    We know that intoxicated people can sometimes be legally liable for their actions. After all, intoxication is not a defense against DUI.

    But the next thing you will tell me is that $1/year porn movie contract she signed is invalid. Right?

  • ||

    Why US media don't disclose that the victim asked to cancel the law suite and forgave Plolansky?

    Go stare at your flag and let people alone. US people break international laws to go kill innocent children in Irak in order to steal their oil, they have only two rights: to shut up and stay home !

  • ||

    Are we stealing oil? How come I don't get any? I want some oil in a big glass container in my backyard.

  • D.R.M.||

    For the rape, sentence him in accordance with the light terms of the old plea deal, just to shut up the whining about what the old (dead) judge was supposedly going to do, or about his being forgiven by his victim, or whatever.

    For the fleeing from justice, give him the maximum penalty allowed under the law. Whenever he comes up for parole, refuse it on the grounds that he's amply proven his willingness to illegally flee the jurisdiction.

  • ||

    Holy sh*t that must be a troll, and a rather inept one at that.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    PL,

    You didn't get yours? I have mine in a leaded crystal jar on my coffee table.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    want some oil in a big glass container in my backyard.

    LOL. You don't get any because you're an American instead of a US Person.

  • ||

    Dammit, I want my oil vat!

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Dammit, I want my oil vat!

    If it weren't for this annoying embargo I would have mine in a Persain vaise.

  • ||

    It was the 70s, man.

    How many life sentences would Jimmy Page, Bill Wyman (not the reviewer at Slate, the Stone) and many, many others being doing right now if the true facts were at issue in a courtroom?

    I am not justifying shit, but just fucking move on. The victim did, Polanski did--what are all your problems?

  • ||

    Poor poor Roman.

    Jews usually give to charity in memory of deceased loved ones. Polanski's apologists use their memory to excuse his rape of a 13 year old girl. I'm sure his family would be proud.

  • David||

    Her own words.

    Some of the attacks on this woman are baseless, if you believe the victim.

    She didn't "get dropped off" by her mom. Polanski picked her up. She tried to bring a friend with her and Polanski told the friend to get lost. She tried to keep the news of the rape from her mother but was soon found out and the mother called the police right away.

  • ||

    We don't look to the victim to ratify her consent decades later in these cases, you know. She had to deal with it and may have decided to forgive him, but what he did was horrific. In fact, the idea that he might've walked after time served when he was being tried is pathetic in itself.

    This isn't an 18-year old having consensual sex with a 17-year old. It's rape of a child.

  • ||

    There was a horrible wrong done here, clearly.

    But only excessive legalism demands that every wrong--even a terrible wrong--must always be met with a knee-jerk legal response. Here, no one is positing that victim now "consents"--that is a bullshit straw man. She feels that 30+ of exile is enough, and the public shaming of Polanski is enough. She doesn't hate the man any longer. So why the fuck some of you feel the need to to continue jumping up and down is beyond me. Maybe you should see what what is going on in Rwanda to foster reconciliation. This mandatory Old Testament "an eye for eye" bullshit might be fine in many cases, but there are just times to move on. This is one of them.

  • ||

    He pled guilty. Maybe there's some purely legally strategic reason for that plea, but it sounds unlikely, given the nature of the crime. His guilt not being in question, why should he get a pass on a horrific crime?

    It ain't an eye for an eye, because no one is proposing to drug and rape him as a kid.

  • ||

    Feministing is pretty anti-Polanski:

    http://www.feministing.com/archives/017998.html

  • kinnath||

    Do you have a daughter henry?

  • ||

    No, but this woman has herself.

    And if I did, and my daughter asked that I honor her feelings on the subject, I think and hope I'd do so.

    Jesus, the predictable lines here are fucking embarrassing.

  • Johnny Cochrane\'s Ghost||

    C'mon, people. It's not as if he decapitated his ex-wife and stabbed a bystander to death.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Jesus, the predictable lines here are fucking embarrassing.

    Don't get your undies in a bunch, henry.

  • ||

    "But only excessive legalism demands that every wrong--even a terrible wrong--must always be met with a knee-jerk legal response."

    What, so everything is forgiven if you have the money and means to hang out in Europe for 30 years? That seems a pretty crazy idea of justice.

    "Here, no one is positing that victim now "consents"--that is a bullshit straw man. She feels that 30+ of exile is enough, and the public shaming of Polanski is enough."

    First, he doens't seem to have much public shame. He has gone on to continue his very successful film career. And he still has lots of defenders. Second, the victim doesn't get to decide punishment in this country, the judge and jury do. Have a sentencing phase and let the judge or jury determine the sentence. I am sorry, but paying off the victim to forgive you, doesn't get you out of responsibility for a crime.

    "She doesn't hate the man any longer. So why the fuck some of you feel the need to to continue jumping up and down is beyond me. Maybe you should see what what is going on in Rwanda to foster reconciliation. This mandatory Old Testament "an eye for eye" bullshit might be fine in many cases, but there are just times to move on. This is one of them."

    This is not Rowanda where you face the choice of either forgiving and forgetting or locking up half the population. This is a much easier case. There is one guy who committed a crime and needs to be held responsible for it. You only have reconciliation commissions when justice just isn't possible. This is not one of those times.

  • ||

    My panties are fine, thanks.

    But "Do you have a daughter" is about the most predictably retarded thing you can say (thus variations on it are everywhere in any forum discussing this case).

  • ||

    John, look up "begging the question" then report back.

  • ||

    And victim impact, even in the intensely legalistic framework we all love and adore, is a very relevant factor. Just because they don't like the guy, however, America's incessant hardasses now decide to jettison it.

  • ||

    Henry,

    Perhaps you should do the same. I am not begging the question at all. The guy committed a crime. Running for thirty years doesn't and shouldn't change that. The message can't be, "do whatevery you like and if you are famous and can dodge justice long enough, all will be forgiven." There are more at stake here than just revenge for the victim.

    And try argueing a point than making dumb ass comments sometime.

  • kinnath||

    "Do you have a daughter" is about the most predictably retarded thing you can say . . .

    Thus henry confirms that he has no daugther and cannot actually fathom the catestrophic impact that the rape of a child has, not only on the child, but to the entire family.

    God bless you henry.

  • ||

    Does "henry" remind you of Lefiti/Edward etc?

  • ||

    "And victim impact, even in the intensely legalistic framework we all love and adore, is a very relevant factor."

    So what? It is not the only factor. Let the victim come and beg for his release. There are lots of people who go to jail for crimes that thier victims forgive them for. By that standard, you could buy your way out of any crime by just paying the victim enough to forgive you.

  • ||

    Guys, have your lynching. We will all sleep safer tonight for it.

    Zzzzzzzz.

  • ||

    "Guys, have your lynching. We will all sleep safer tonight for it."

    Sending a guy to for ass raping a 13 year old after he pled guilty is really a lynching. That is just you saying "I have lost the argument and have nothing else to say".

  • kinnath||

    Nor does henry grasp that the key issue is not actually the rape, but using wealth and fame to flee the country to avoid punishment for decades

  • Justice Thomas||

    Did somebody say "lynching"?

  • ||

    I don't get your position, henry. The guy is guilty and fled from justice. We tend not to let people get away with that, particularly with major felonies. How does it serve the interest of justice to let this guy off the hook because he was wealthy enough to escape and famous enough to get the French to protect him?

    Why do you think the girl's opinion matters now? Her consent wasn't relevant to at least one of his crimes at the time, so it isn't relevant today, either. Besides, no telling why she said what she said. Moving on may be part of it, but so might $.

    I guess Wiesenthal was wrong to go after Eichmann, huh? Some of his victims may have forgiven him, too. By the way, it's not "lynching" when the guy has admitted guilt (and I believe they had the evidence to convict him of at least some of the counts without the plea).

  • kinnath||

    I don't think it's necessary to lynch Roman, I just think he needs to spend some quality time with a burly, biker-type in a very small jail cell.

  • T||

    But only excessive legalism demands that every wrong--even a terrible wrong--must always be met with a knee-jerk legal response.

    He's getting extradited on a request we sent to the Swiss in 2005, and will face the music for a crime he pled guilty to in 1978. His attorneys tried to get the charges dropped and were told that he must present himself to the court for that to happen. Where, exactly, is the knee-jerk response?

  • ||

    Does anyone here even pretend to foster the various objectives of the criminal law--you know, specific deterrence, general deterrence, punishment, etc?

    Because all the deterrence arguments are complete horseshit in this case. And yes I do defer to the victim on punishment, as opposed to a bunch of internet pudpounders who seem more suited to a tea party ranting about "elites".

    I repeat: Zzzzzzzzz.

  • ||

    Oh definitely a Lefiti type.

  • ||

    The other thing about the victim is that Polanski's fame is one of the reasons why she doesn't want him prosecuted. She doesn't want her name dragged through the media and the mud by Polanski's defenders. This poor woman was raped at age 13 and now has to hear jackasses on the HuffPO talk about how she was whored out by her mom and really wanted it. I wouldn't want the thing to come back either. But, that seems to me to be all the more reason to go after Polanski. People shouldn't be able to get away with crimes because their fame makes things bad for their victims.

  • Obvious Man!||

    henri is a troll and a talentless troll at that.

  • ||

    "And yes I do defer to the victim on punishment, as opposed to a bunch of internet pudpounders who seem more suited to a tea party ranting about "elites"."

    So if she wanted him castrated you would "defer to the victim" on that?

  • ||

    There are plenty of cases where some criminal is found 30 years later, living respectably, harming no one and I always feel pretty much the same way unless there is some victim who is still suffering--just move on if the victim is willing to do so. What is the fucking point bowing to some abstraction?

    Deal with real people's lives already.

  • ||

    John, you can't possibly be as dumb as your last post. I think.

  • Urkobold™||

    FOOLS! THE PROPER QUESTION TO HENRY ISN'T WHETHER HE HAS A DAUGHTER; IT'S WHETHER HE'S HAD SEX WITH A MINOR.

  • Obvious Man! ||

    What is the fucking point bowing to some abstraction?

    Pretty lame dude.

  • ||

    "There are plenty of cases where some criminal is found 30 years later, living respectably, harming no one and I always feel pretty much the same way unless there is some victim who is still suffering--just move on if the victim is willing to do so. What is the fucking point bowing to some abstraction?"

    First, he wasn't living peacably. He has publicly admited to sleeping with at least one other under age girl-Nastasia Kinski. Is it your position that it should be okay to sleep with underage girls as long as said girls never complain? Do you think that 13 is a proper age of consent?

    Second, lots of people go to jail 30 years after being captured, if the crime was violent and serious enough. And rape certainly qualifies as that.

  • ||

    If Polanski were a former member of the Nixon Administration who banged a 13 year old and ran off to Francy, I seriously doubt there would be anyone at HuffPo or Henry defending him. It is just amazing how people will use celbrity to excuse anything. The guy is a famous movie maker, so he should be excused is just gross.

  • ||

    Guys, you'll probably get your collective wish and we'll have shown somebody something vitally important for the ages, and you'll feel warm and tingly about it, for some reason.

    Jesus.

  • ||

    Oh God, some Nixon analogy.

    Why am I not surprised?

    Does EVERYTHING have to be political with you losers?

    I am sorry I wasted my time.

  • ||

    IP address check please. I see convergence to the usual Lefiti algorithm output.

  • ||

    Henry,

    You are an idiot. What is so special about Polanski? If he were not a famous film maker but a disgraced politician from the other side, you would want to hang him regardless of the victim.

    You don't even beleive the crap you write. Defer to the victim? Bullshit. Name me one other case where you would "defer to the victim on punishment". There isn't any, except this one.

    The bottomline is the guy got a woman drunk and gave her a qualude and raped her. That would be a crime if she had been 30. But the fact that she was 13 makes it a hundred times worse. That is too bad a crime to just forgive and forget just because he is famous and an artist or the victim doesn't want to talk about it anymore.

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    I think that D.R.M's solution has a certain elegance to it.

  • ||

    Kate - I'm with you. This is not some little crime that should be justified away due to him being well-liked by hollywood and the left. Due to him having faced difficulties in his life. He drugged and raped a 13-year-old child, admitted guilt and ran from facing the consequences of his actions. It's past time to pay the price. He is not above the law.

  • ||

    He didn't just take a few pictures or feel her up either. He ass raped her. My God, what the hell kind of sicko drugs any woman, letalone a child and sodomizes her? You don't just do something like that by mistake or in a momentary lapse of judgement. You have to be a serious sicko to do something like that.

  • ||

    Does "henry" remind you of Lefiti/Edward etc?

    No. "henry" reminds me of a boil on my ass I had lanced.

    I do find it interesting that the feminists and libertarians finally found something to agree on, Polanski is child raping scum who deserves punishment by the justice system.

    We'll all be singing Kumbaya around the campfire soon.

  • JB||

    Shorter Joan Z. Shore: "Rape is ok."

    Dumb fucking cunt.

  • T||

    So, henry-troll seems to think we, as a society, should let people off if they can hide from the law long enough. On the flip side, he sees no deterrent value in bringing people to justice after an extended period of time.

    I envision a justice system where nobody shows up to court, ever.

  • Attorney||

    Does anyone here even pretend to foster the various objectives of the criminal law--you know, specific deterrence, general deterrence, punishment, etc?

    Because all the deterrence arguments are complete horseshit in this case.


    How does bringing someone to justice no matter how famous he is and no matter how much time has elapsed since the crime not serve the goal of deterrence?

  • jeff ||

    After Polanski is returned and jailed for the rest of his life, I know the legal absolutists on this thread will turn the focus of their outrage to the heinous torturers employed by the government, and the politicians who gave the orders for their deeds and provided cover. Far worse crimes with far more victims. Or the security contractor DynCorp, which was discovered to be running a child prostitution ring servicing American servicemen in Bosnia. Or senior members of the Reagan administration who were deeply complicit with Latin American death squads responsible for dozens of documented abuses of children including rape, torture and murder.

    Point being, all of these cases have featured many voices arguing for a mitigation of consequences, and the Polanski case is the least severe but most hotly pursued.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    No matter what the guy is a complete douche bag and even according to his own words, only regrets what has happened to him since that night.

    From the book "Polanski on Polanski"

    G) But surely you brought the rape case upon yourself?
    P) .... Soon afterwards someone told me of a young girl who had the look I was after.

    G) Do you regret having made love to this young girl?
    P) I regret everything I had to go through afterwords.

    G) She was thirteen years old.
    P) She was about to turn fourteen. Three weeks later to be exact.

    G) That's no excuse.
    P) If you had seen her, you would have thought she was at leas eighteen years old.

    G) Do you feel like the victim of a judiciary error?
    P) The young girl admitted in front of a tribunal that she'd already had intercourse...... When Mr. Smith or Mr. Brown sleeps with a fourteen year-old adolescents who look eighteen, it doesn't interest anyone.

  • ||

    Jeff,

    If you feel that there are contractors who ought to be punished, good for you. Perhaps they should be. But that has nothing to do with Polanski.

    Jesus Tap Dancing Christ, is there any person, no matter how loathsome, who can't have one of his defenders trott out the "Bush should be in Jail so how dare anyone want to punish this poor guy" line of horseshit?

    Pointing out that there are other criminals in the world is the lamest defense of criminal activity imagineable.

  • ||

    Because all the deterrence arguments are complete horseshit in this case.

    How again is throwing a criminal in jail for a crime he plead guilty to not a deterrent?

    "They will get you if you break the law even if it takes them 30 years" seems like a pretty good deterrent....and the fact of its high publicity makes it even more so.

  • ||

    P) The young girl admitted in front of a tribunal that she'd already had intercourse...... When Mr. Smith or Mr. Brown sleeps with a fourteen year-old adolescents who look eighteen, it doesn't interest anyone.

    Seriously?

    There are poeple here that defend this pile of shit?

    That is fucked up.

  • Roman Polanski||

    Americans ... they are so provincial.

  • ||

    Joshua Corning,

    Read the girl's grand jury testimony. It is available on the smoking gun. Just take a shower afterwards. It is astounding that people defend this guy. And it shows how depraved Hollywood is that he was able to go on with his career after this.

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/polanskicover1.html

  • Context||

    Everything I now about this case is from memory of news accounts at the time.I'm about the same age as the girl.

    Didn't her Mom drop her off at Jack Nicholson's house for an "all-night nude photo session" with Roman Polanski?

    And after that go after him with a shake-down attempt culminating in a successful civil suit?

    History Lesson

    The 1970s were a different world than we live in today.Kiddie porn was legal,nude photos of underage actresses and models were standard cinema and fashion magazine fare.The drinking age was 18 and you didn't usually get "carded" when younger than that.Statutory rape laws were rarely enforced and when they were the " she gives it away(or sells it) all the time to adult men" was a legal defense.ABC after school specials educated young girls that they could run away to New York City and work the "Minnesota Strip" just like Jodie Foster in Taxi Driver

  • More Context||

    People smoked dope and snorted coke openly in public places.Girls in my 7th and 8th grade class dated men in their 20s who picked them up at school.

    I'm not (totally) defending Roman Polanski's actions but tell me where I'm wrong?

  • ||

    Bitch set me up!

  • Attorney||

    I was in high school in the '70s. You're right that it was a different world in many ways, but I think some of what you say is incorrect:

    Kiddie porn was legal,

    No, it was not.

    nude photos of underage actresses and models were standard cinema and fashion magazine fare.

    I don't remember anything like that.

    the " she gives it away(or sells it) all the time to adult men" was a legal defense.

    It was not a legal defense. All it might have done is kept the prosecutor from charging the dude.

  • hmm||

    How does it go?

    Play stupid games. Win stupid prizes.

    Plead guilty to charges. Win some prison time.

    He deserves the time, if for nothing else than pleading guilty. The age argument is moot. If he wanted to challenge the law he shouldn't have plead guilty to it.

  • ||

    Not only did he plead guilty, he's also apparently admitted to the part where he had sex with a 13-year old. If he drugged and raped her, he shouldn't be walking free, and there's something seriously wrong with a certain country giving him cover all these years.

  • ||

    Sadly, Anne Applebaum, whom I generally like, seems to think Polanski should get off because his parents were Holocaust victims.

    Applebaum is married to the Polish Foreign Minister. Poland is seeking to prevent his extradition ...

  • Anonymous||

    Even if, for the sake of argument, one granted that Context's "History Lesson" is an accurate portrayal of 1970s' society, much of it (the public use of dope and coke for example) is irrelevant to the case at hand. Moreover, Polanski is not in trouble today because current criminal law is retroactively being applied to acts committed in the past; rather, he was charged at the time and pled guilty. Whether others were up to all sorts of shenanigans at the same time (or now or whenever) isn't really the issue either. One could, after all, add to Context's "History Lesson" the following: Even for the 1970s, anally raping drugged teens was considered beyond the pale by most.

    Somehow I don't think that would help Context's "defense" of Polanski though...

  • Anonymous||

    The entrapment argument that Context seems to raise is also a foul one. Even if, again for the sake of argument, the mother were guilty of using the daughter as bait, it would have no bearing on Polanski's guilt: being 13, the daughter would be unable to give consent, either to the alleged "shake-down attempt" or to sex with Polanski. Whether 13 (or 14 or whenever) should be the age of consent is another question. It does not seem to have been, however, even in the 1970s, and, moreover, there is serious doubt as to whether she would have consented had she been able to.

  • Context||

    One could, after all, add to Context's "History Lesson" the following: Even for the 1970s, anally raping drugged teens was considered beyond the pale by most.

    Not at my school!

  • Context||

    My point is not to offer a "legal defense" in this particular case.After all Polanski plead guilty.We all know innocent people NEVER plead guilty.Why would they do that? /sarcasm

    I'm just sayin' this sounds a whole lot worse now than it did then.

  • dfd||

    Didn't her Mom drop her off at Jack Nicholson's house for an "all-night nude photo session" with Roman Polanski?

    No dumbass, she didn't. Since you can't be bothered to check even the most basic facts before posting a completely false accusation loaded with innuendo it's safe to say the rest of your comment is not worth reading.

    But beyond that, even if she had dropped her off, how would that be relevant to his sticking his penis into a 13-year-old's anus after she told him no? And how the hell would a mother's dropping her daughter off for an "all night nude photo session" (which she absolutely did not do) have to do with him giving her drugs and alcohol and then proceeding to molest and rape her despite her requests for him to stop?

    If your only information is from only your seriously lacking memory, why post such a slanderous comment without even the slightest interest in getting it right? What a lazy asshole.

  • dfd||

    I'm just sayin' this sounds a whole lot worse now than it did then.

    Really? Raping (and I don't mean statutorily either) a 13 year-old didn't seem like such a bad thing in the 70's? Oh please, you're a fucking tool for trying to pass off that bullshit.

  • jeff||

    John at 5:15PM said:

    "... is there any person, no matter how loathsome, who can't have one of his defenders trott out the "Bush should be in Jail so how dare anyone want to punish this poor guy" line of horseshit? "

    That wasn't the line of horseshit that was being pursued. No defense of Polanski was offered, rather an observation that there seemed to be a certain righteous legal absolutism underscoring many of the comments here, and from there wondering if these energies will follow on to far more vile indictable crimes against children or if they are reserved only for this particular case.

  • Austin Powers||

    Yeah, Baby! Everyone was doing it!

  • Nancy Green||

    It's taken thirty years for the press to stop parroting his version-- the one where a poor vulnerable guy is preyed on by a 'nymphet'.
    Salon ran a very tough post on this, and then buried it in the back pages, but I link to it here, along with other aspects of the case--

    http://kmareka.com/2009/09/28/fangirl-and-fanboy/

  • Michael Ejercito||

    I know the legal absolutists on this thread will turn the focus of their outrage to the heinous torturers employed by the government, and the politicians who gave the orders for their deeds and provided cover.


    Who were the victims of this torture?

    Or the security contractor DynCorp, which was discovered to be running a child prostitution ring servicing American servicemen in Bosnia.


    Has Bosnia demanded their extradition?

    Have those American servicemen been court-martialed?

    Or senior members of the Reagan administration who were deeply complicit with Latin American death squads responsible for dozens of documented abuses of children including rape, torture and murder.


    Any extradition requests from those countries?

  • fds||

    (and I don't mean statutorily either)

    She can't remember if she has been taking quaaludes since she was 10 or 11 years old so how can she remember if she said "yes or no" when Roman Polanski asked if he could stick it in her pooper?

  • ||

    Context has apparently arrived from an alternate universe.

    In the 1970s the word jailbait had exactly the same meaning as it does today.

  • MJ||

    "Not to defend Polanski, but let's not forget that the man had his wife brutally murdered by the Manson Gang. That's got to fuck your head up something good." - Episarch

    That matters why? What is the point of pointing out that his past history may have been emotionally disturbing if you are not trying to excuse his behavior?

  • Mad Max||

    'We all know innocent people NEVER plead guilty.Why would they do that? /sarcasm'

    So you believe Polanski to be innocent?

    What is the basis of your opinion?

  • ||

    There are plenty of cases where some criminal is found 30 years later, living respectably, harming no one

    Just like Phillip Garrido.
    I suppose because he kept Jaycee Lee Dugard in his backyard for 18 years, and she "bonded" with him and they became a "family", that all should be forgive.

    If Polanski can be forgiven because he managed to escape justice for 32 years, why not Phillip Garrido? Lets forgive him too.
    Or, wait, you mean that Garrido is a "monster" while Polanski is an "artist", and that really makes a big difference?

  • MJ||

    I'd just like to point out that how close a teenage girl is to the age of consent is only relevant if she did give consent to what was done to her.

  • ||

    After Polanski is returned and jailed for the rest of his life, I know the legal absolutists on this thread will turn the focus of their outrage to the heinous torturers employed by the government, and the politicians who gave the orders for their deeds and provided cover. Far worse crimes with far more victims.

    When your argument is "ass-raping a child isn't as bad as torture", you have lost the argument.

  • Icepick Slim||

    I'd just like to point out that how close a teenage girl is to the age of consent is only relevant if she did give consent to what was done to her.

    So did Polanski plead guilty to forcible or stautory rape?


    The "child" had used 'ludes for 3 years and was something of a champagne connoisseur.The now adult "victim" is cool with Polanski getting away with it.His crime,at this date,is merely against the State.

  • ||

    The "child" had used 'ludes for 3 years and was something of a champagne connoisseur.The now adult "victim" is cool with Polanski getting away with it.His crime,at this date,is merely against the State.

    Sure she did. You know it because you read it in some Polanski apologia, therefore it must be true.

  • B||

    "She feels that 30+ of exile is enough, and the public shaming of Polanski is enough. She doesn't hate the man any longer. So why the fuck some of you feel the need to to continue jumping up and down is beyond me."

    Yes, his "exile" whereby he jetsetted around the world to various film festivals and directed Oscar-winning films, rubbing elbows with the Hollywood elite, making millions of dollars in the process is such horrible fucking punishment. Polanski has been given major awards in various resort towns all over the globe, has multiple individuals defending him against child rape charges merely for the fact he directed a few good films (because hey, directing the Pianist obviously outweighs the fact you jammed your dick in some thirteen year old after you drugged her), and even has the leadership of multiple countries jumping to his aid. So exactly what fucking shaming has this piece of shit suffered? And arresting someone who thumbed his nose at the law and pissed on his victim for 32 years is not being "excessively legalistic". This guy didn't fucking steal a loaf of bread.

    In short, Henry go fuck yourself.

  • B||

    "The "child" had used 'ludes for 3 years and was something of a champagne connoisseur,"


    Wow, why don't you fucking plagiarize another Polanski apologia? I read that exact sentence in an editorial on the subject.

  • B||

    "She feels that 30+ of exile is enough..."


    When did "fugitive from the law" become a euphemism for "exile"?

  • Icepick Slim||

    Hazel Meade | September 28, 2009, 11:07pm | #
    The "child" had used 'ludes for 3 years and was something of a champagne connoisseur.The now adult "victim" is cool with Polanski getting away with it.His crime,at this date,is merely against the State.

    Sure she did. You know it because you read it in some Polanski apologia, therefore it must be true.



    No Samantha testified before the grand jury that she had her first 'lude at 10 or 11.Read the fucking links.

  • ||

    I don't care if she'd been getting high on butthash since age 5, torturing ants with thick lenses just for the thrill of watching them die, and sucked de-clawed toothless gerbils into her rectum through a vacuum tube.

    THE GUY FUCKED A 13 YEAR OLD GIRL IN THE ASS. PERIOD. END OF STORY. THANK YOU FOR PLAYING, ROMAN, YOU LOSE AT LIFE.

  • Anonymous||

    Whether the victim used quaaludes before is about as relevant as her sexual history is to whether she was raped. Statutory rape, rightly or wrongly, is rape precisely because the minor is considered incapable of consenting. That she had been perhaps raped before shouldn't excuse her being raped again. Moreover, it isn't clear that the rape was only statutory, so what the proper age of consent should be may not even be relevant in this case.

  • B||

    "No Samantha testified before the grand jury that she had her first 'lude at 10 or 11.Read the fucking links."

    How in the fuck is that relevant? What are you gonna tell us next, that she was wearing a short skirt?

  • marcd||

    1. He pled guilty in a plea deal that was approved, then reneged on by a judge.
    2. Only then did he leave the country.
    3. For thirty years the U.S. has slept on its right to have him extradited, thereby foregoing its rights.
    4. Polansky has not been accused ever since of a similar crime.
    5. The cost of incarceration per inmate is over $100,000/year - or for an expected 5 years incarceration at a minimum $500,000. I am sure California has a sufficiently large budget to include Polansky.

  • ||

    Read the girl's grand jury testimony. It is available on the smoking gun. Just take a shower afterwards. It is astounding that people defend this guy. And it shows how depraved Hollywood is that he was able to go on with his career after this.

    Oh, come on. It's not like did something really depraved, like contribute money for the passage of Proposition 8.

  • ||

    Kiddie porn was legal,

    No, it was not.



    I guess you don't remember those books of David Hamilton photos that were all the rage during the 70s. Those definitely fall under the current definition of kiddie porn.

  • ||

    Girls in my 7th and 8th grade class dated men in their 20s who picked them up at school.

    Remember the Woody Allen film, "Manhattan" (1979), in which Allen's character is shtupping a 17-year old (behavior that today would require him to register for life as a sex offender)?

  • ||

    Polansky = http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=pederass

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    1. He pled guilty in a plea deal that was approved, then reneged on by a judge.
    2. Only then did he leave the country.

    No, it was never reneged on. According to him, he left because he thought it was going to be reneged on. Also you do realize that the supposed "reneging" only consisted of him spending another 48 days in prison and being deported. 90 days in prison for ass raping a little girl seems like a very lenient punishment for ass raping a little girl to me.

    3. For thirty years the U.S. has slept on its right to have him extradited, thereby foregoing its rights.
    France would not extradite him, try again,


    4. Polansky has not been accused ever since of a similar crime.

    Depend on which crime. On the crime he plead guilty to he was very brazen about committing while in France. Soon after moving to France he started a very public affair with Natasha Kinski, who was only 15 at the time.

    You could make the argument that his leaving had more to do with finding a country that was more tolerant towards his penchant for having sex with children, forcibly or otherwise, than it was his fear of spend another 48 days in prison.


    5. The cost of incarceration per inmate is over $100,000/year - or for an expected 5 years incarceration at a minimum $500,000. I am sure California has a sufficiently large budget to include Polansky.

    So exactly what is your price point that would make punishing someone for "raping a 13 year old" cost effective?

  • Lisa||

    He should be held accountable for his actions.

  • ||

    Didn't they sort of "rape" the prisoners at abu Ghraib prison … and they took pictures, just like Roman Polanski did with the 13 year old. Obviously, the guards were just trying to do their "Roman Polanski" thing.

    Roman Polanski = abu Ghraib

  • tbates||

    One point that needs to be addressed from a libertarian perspective is what about the victim? All crimes, as libertarians see them, are crimes against a person, not crimes against the state. Does the victim wish to punish Polanski? Does she wish to enforce her claim against him? Certainly she is a full-fledged adult now, and as the victim, ought to have the final say on whether to go ahead with this or not?

    If someone steals something from me can I refuse to press charges? Of course. But the law strips victims of such rights in cases like this. I'm just in favor of letting victims decide if they wish to pursue the matter. And my understanding is that the woman involved actually says she doesn't want it pursued and that pursuit of the case only makes things worse for her. If she doesn't want it pursued because she finds that troubling, then isn't pursuit, in spite of her wishes, merely victimizing her again, once again saying that her will or consent is not important?

  • ||

    Soon after moving to France he started a very public affair with Natasha Kinski, who was only 15 at the time.

    Except that wasn't a crime; the age of consent in France was (and is) 15.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    Except that wasn't a crime; the age of consent in France was (and is) 15.
    And the age of consent is 12 in the Phillipines. I hope you have a point beyond listing the age of consent for various countries.

  • Icepick Slim||

    How in the fuck is that relevant? What are you gonna tell us next, that she was wearing a short skirt?

    She wasn't wearing anything when she got into the jacuzzi.If you read the grand jury testimony she even took off her copper colored panties.

  • ||

    It doesn't matter how many years passed by. The fact is that he fled and he didn't have the courage to answer for himself.
    Not only this, what about the stage mother who sold her daughter to him? She should be accountable as well, but that wasn't the case back then. While I don't think he should serve a life sentence, I do think that he does need to account for his behaviour because he was old enough to know the difference.
    The fact that he is a director is no excuse to ignore the crime and his flagrant disregard for the law.

  • ||

    What victim? She was a Lolita who went along with her mother's plan to sleep with a director. When she didn't get the goods, the police came knocking. I'm sure there are many actors of that era, especially Jack Nicholson, who have even worse sexual records but funnily enough they're never arrested for anything. But Polanski is demonized, and the Lolita is the 'poor victim.' What rubbish.
    What does it say when a 13 year old is willing to have sex? It says just as much for her as for Polanski. Not only this, if the age of consent was 15, and she didn't look younger than 15, then what is the issue?

  • ||

    @Dion
    "What does it say when a 13 year old is willing to have sex? It says just as much for her as for Polanski. Not only this, if the age of consent was 15, and she didn't look younger than 15, then what is the issue?"

    1. The problem with the first argument is that she was not willing to have sex. According to her testimony, she said no multiple times.
    2. Beyond that, a 13 year old girl has no say in the matter. The answer is always no, because she cannot legally consent to sexual activity with a person 5 years older, let alone 30 years older (as Polanski was).
    3. In the US, age is not determined by looks. Maybe a difficult concept, but we count the years since a person was born, and presto, you know their age.

  • david||

    guilty! guilty! guilty!

  • ||

    And the age of consent is 12 in the Phillipines. I hope you have a point beyond listing the age of consent for various countries.

    The point is that Polanski's affair with Kinski is no evidence that he's "he [has] done something like that again," if "something like that" is understood to mean "violate laws about underage sex." It may mean no better than that he checks the local statute books and manages to restrain himself only to that extent, but even that would tend to show that he's not an uncontrolled pedophile, but a person who is capable of complying with societal norms.

  • ||

    Agreed. But I don't know, dude. I thought Frantic was damn good.

  • ||

    Roman Polanski Plea Transcript - September 28, 2009

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/a.....plea1.html

    Read pages 15 and 16th:

    IF THE COURT DOES NOT ACCEPT THE PLEA AGREEMENT THE DEFENDANT WILL BE ALLOW TO WITHDRAW THE PLEA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    But the judge was running for re-election. So he was going to improve his chances by sentencing Mr Polanski to the max and not allowing him to withdraw the plea.

    The judicial system is corrupt to its core.

  • ||

    Roman Polanski Plea Transcript - September 28, 2009

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/a.....plea1.html

    Read pages 15 and 16th:

    IF THE COURT DOES NOT ACCEPT THE PLEA AGREEMENT THE DEFENDANT WILL BE ALLOW TO WITHDRAW THE PLEA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    But the judge was running for re-election. So he was going to improve his chances by sentencing Mr Polanski to the max and not allowing him to withdraw the plea.

    The judicial system is corrupt to its core.

  • Tostitos||

    From a legal standpoint his charge isn't very serious, as it was statutory rape and not the other kind. Realistically he is a forcible rapist but there isn't much we can do about it now.

  • ||

    It doesn't matter whether the CHILD was dressed slutty, pushed on him by her mother or if she was a virgin, she was 13 years old, THAT IS RAPE. Add to that her saying no, her trying to get away, her being drugged, and it is still RAPE. Many rape victims try to just forget and drop charges, especially when being called a whore by the media. Polansky pled guilty to a lesser charge, the DA never should have let him. He should have been jailed then, and he should have stayed and done the time. SInce he didn't he should have to face the FULL penalties for his crime, money should not buy him out of punishment. If he didn't want to go to jail he should not have drugged and RAPED a child.

  • ||

    According to the court transcripts, Polanski did NOT drug her. She knew of Quaaludes & took it freely with him along with the Champagne. Recorded fact. She was NOT found physically harmed as per medical findings & no genital/rectal trauma was evident as in forced sex. Fact.

    He pleaded guilty to having underage intercourse, did his time & was released halfway through his official sentence on recommendation to be of no threat, & he never was. Fact. The Seventies regarded sex & drug related issues much more relaxed, & most of all in Hollywood & we cannot ever judge them by today’s moral standards.

    Polanski only fled the US because the prejudiced judge wanted to sentence him again after going back on his plea bargain, most likely for being a foreign Jewish celebrity, to eventually deport him. Fact.

    His arrest in Switzerland was orchestrated by the Swiss authorities in exchange for the US going easy on its IRS investigations of a major bank (the USB), which allegedly helps Americans tax-evade in Switzerland. Fact.

    Geimer never wanted him imprisoned, has declared more than once over the years that is wasn't rape, has long gone over it all, and pleaded often enough that they should free him. He was railroaded then & was railroaded now, after all he had suffered in his life already, all clearly projected in his acclaimed films.

    Who are we to deny him final justice with ill-informed lynch mob sentiments and self-righteous ignorance. We should be concentrating on much much worse crimes happening right now.

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