Director Roman Polanski, who won the directing Oscar in 2003 for The Pianist, will not be coming to the U.S. from his home in Europe this week to contest his 1978 conviction for having sex with a 13-year-old girl, his attorneys said in a court filing Monday, Reuters reports.
Polanski fled the country after his conviction more than 30 years ago, and has not set foot on U.S. soil since. The 75-year-old, who has directed such cinematic classics as Chinatown and Rosemary’s Baby, would likely be arrested if he did, legal experts told Reuters. This February, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Peter Espinoza refused to consider Polanski’s request to dismiss his 1978 conviction as long as the director remained out of the country. Polanski’s decision not to return essentially ends his quest to have his conviction dismissed. The fairness of Polanksi’s trial has been called into question recently, most notably by the acclaimed documentary, Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired, which premiered on HBO last year.