Roman Polanski extradition rejected by top Polish court

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Roman Polanski at a press event in Katowice, Poland, 24 May 2016Image source, EPA
Image caption,
Polanski has cancelled plans to film in Poland

Poland's Supreme Court has rejected a request by the country's justice minister to have film-maker Roman Polanski extradited to the US.

Oscar winner Polanski is wanted in the US over a decades-old case involving sex with a minor.

A Polish district court rejected a US extradition request last year.

But Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro revived the case in May, appealing to the Supreme Court to overturn the lower court ruling.

He said he wanted to "avoid double standards" and that nobody should be above the law.

Polanski grew up in Poland and, although he now has homes in France and Switzerland, he visits his homeland often.

The case has led him to cancel plans to film in Poland.

Polanski fled the US ahead of sentencing in 1978 after admitting having sex with a girl aged 13.

His victim, Samantha Geimer, described the ordeal of giving testimony against Polanski, in an interview for the BBC's Hardtalk programme in 2013.

Media caption,

Samantha Geimar: Consequences of rape were awful

Polanski has French and Polish citizenship.

Swiss authorities turned down a US extradition warrant in 2010, after placing Polanski under house arrest for nine months, while extradition from France is a notoriously cumbersome process.

Image source, AP
Image caption,
The director (right) was 44 when he pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with a 13-year-old in California