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US judge refuses to dismiss Roman Polanski rape case

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Los Angeles: A judge in Los Angeles has refused to dismiss a rape case against French-Polish film director Roman Polanski, which has been ongoing since the 1970s.

The judge’s decision on Friday came after the alleged victim, Samantha Geimer, had appealed in June for the case to be dismissed so that she could move on, reports Efe news.

However, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon denied her request saying he could not dismiss the case “merely because it would be in the victim’s best interest”.

“Her statement is dramatic evidence of the long-lasting and traumatic effect these crimes, and defendant’s refusal to obey court orders and appear for sentencing, is having on her life,” Gordon said.

The judge added that it was in the society’s interest to ensure justice, which would only be possible if the case against Polanski continued.

Geimer had said that 40 years had passed and urged for the case to be put to rest “as an act of mercy” towards her and her family.

In 1977, Polanski, who was then 43, had allegedly drugged a 13-year-old Geimer and forced her to have sexual relations with him after a photo session.

Polanski pleaded guilty to the charge of unlawful sex with a minor and spent 42 days in prison, however when out on bail and fearing having to serve a more severe sentence, the filmmaker fled the US towards the end of 1978.

In February, Polanski had presented a series of legal documents to be able to return to the country and close the case, as long as he was guaranteed he would not have to spend any more time behind bars.

For decades, the filmmaker’s movements have been restricted over fears of extradition to the US.

In another case similar to that of Geimer, a woman came out in public claiming Polanski had sexually abused her in 1973 when she was 16.

Moreover, in 2010 actress Charlotte Lewis said the filmmaker had sexually abused her in 1982 when she was 16.

IANS

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