U.S. authorities are preparing to "evaluate" their options over the decision by Swiss officials not to extradite moviemaker Roman Polanski on a child-sex charge - insisting they will "continue to seek justice". The "Rosemary's Baby" director was released from house arrest on Monday, July 12 after American officials' request to have him returned to the U.S. were turned down.
They had demanded the filmmaker be sent back to the States to face sentencing for having sex with a 13-year-old girl at a Hollywood party in 1977. He pleaded guilty to the offence but fled to Europe in 1978. Polanski had been under house arrest at his chalet in Gstaad, Switzerland since Christmas 2009 after he was seized in Zurich last September but Swiss officials turned down the U.S. extradition request on Monday because they could not rule out the possibility that there was a "fault" in the case.
The decision has angered U.S. State Department spokesman Philip Crowley, who is planning to take further action to force Polanski to face justice. He says, "(Sex with) a 13-year-old girl by an adult who should know better and does know better is a crime. We will continue to seek justice in this case and we will evaluate our options... This is not a matter of technicality."
Meanwhile, Polanski has reached out to his supporters and thanked them for their ongoing backing during his time under house arrest. In a statement, he says, "I simply want, from the bottom of my heart, to thank all those who supported me and tell them today of my great satisfaction. Massive thanks to everyone."