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Roman Polanski Seeks Sealed Transcript in Renewed Bid for U.S. Return

An attorney for Roman Polanski has asked a judge to unseal transcripts related to the director’s 1977 rape prosecution, in hopes of allowing him to return to the U.S.

In a letter dated Feb. 6, attorney Harland Braun asked Judge Scott Gordon to unseal the 2010 testimony of Deputy District Attorney Roger Gunson, who was the prosecutor on the rape case. Braun asserts that doing so will support his contention that Polanski has already served sufficient time, and the case should be concluded.

The director pleaded no contest to raping a 13-year-old girl in 1977, and served 42 days at Chino prison for an evaluation. Ahead of his sentencing hearing in 1978, Polanski fled the country. He now lives in Paris.

Los Angeles prosecutors have sought to extradite Polanski several times in recent years without success. In 2009, he was arrested in Switzerland and later put under house arrest at his chalet. Switzerland ultimately refused the request for extradition. The L.A. district attorney’s office and the courts have been unwilling to resolve the case unless Polanski first returns to L.A. and submits to the court’s jurisdiction.

In December, a Polish court rejected prosecutors’ latest attempts to extradite Polanski, who holds French and Polish citizenship. Braun intends to ask the Los Angeles courts to recognize the Polish decision and to close the case, which would allow Polanski to travel to the U.S.

Gordon is expected to hold a hearing on Braun’s request to unseal the Gunson transcripts on Feb. 24. The request was first reported by TMZ.

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