United States asks Switzerland to extradite Roman Polanski

Federal Office of Justice receives formal extradition request

Keywords: Extradition

Press Release, FOJ, 23.10.2009

Bern. The United States has asked Switzerland to extradite Roman Polanski. The Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) received the formal extradition request yesterday evening.

The Franco-Polish film director was arrested in Zurich on 26 September 2009 on the basis of a US warrant and taken into custody awaiting extradition. The US Embassy in Berne submitted the formal extradition request to the FOJ on 22 October 2009, within the deadline of 40 days stipulated under the bilateral extradition treaty. The US extradition request is based on a warrant issued by the Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Los Angeles on 1 February 1978, on which date Polanski had failed to appear before the judge as was required by his bail conditions. During the US criminal investigation, Polanski had admitted to having unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor. He is wanted by the US authorities with a view to passing sentence for this offence.

The FOJ will forward the extradition request to the Canton of Zurich for the purpose of holding a hearing for Polanski and will make its decision regarding extradition based on the results of the hearing and the information provided by Polanski’s lawyer. In case extradition is considered to be admissible Polanski will have the option of appealing against the FOJ’s decision before the Federal Criminal Court and the Federal Supreme Court as the court of last instance.

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