12 Jul 2010

One Point For Europe

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76-year-old Roman Polanski is now again a free man.

European civilization and rationality, for once, triumphed over American mobocracy and barbarism when the Swiss Ministry of Justice took a technical route to dismiss the US request for extradition of internationally-renowned director Roman Polanski.

The Swiss had asked to examine American records establishing whether a previous plea arrangement for an observation period of confinement in a psychiatric unit had been accepted by both sides and subsequently reneged upon by a press-conscious judge. The Los Angeles district attorney’s office refused to supply the relevant records, which tends to suggest strongly that they would have confirmed the reality of the alleged plea bargain arrangement. So, the clever Swiss, noting that the records could prove that Polanski had already actually served his sentence making the extradition request invalid ruled that the extradition request was incomplete and consequently defective, and deserved to be dismissed.

US justice in this matter was, by comparison, politically-motivated featuring, in 1977 and now, public officials posing as champions of the people in the midst of a firestorm of gossip, innuendo, and public misunderstanding whipped up by an opportunistic press. The Swiss tried to do justice. The Americans tried to score points with the mob. I applaud the Swiss.

Variety

New York Times story

Previous Polanski coverage.

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