Last week we heard that director Roman Polanski, who was sitting in a Swiss jail await extradition to the US for raping and sodomizing a 13 year-old girl in 1977, was “depressed” in prison. His lawyer begged Swiss officials to set bail for Polanski, explaining that the 76 year-old was “dejected,” “tired” and “in an unsettled state of mind,” which of course is not typical when a person has to deal with incarceration. Our hearts bled for the rapist, and it looks like he’s received a temporary reprieve from jail. On Friday Polanski was taken to a hospital outside Zurich to undergo tests for an undisclosed condition. It’s unclear at this point whether he’s still there.
Polanski’s lawyer, Herve Temime, confirmed reports that his 76-year-old client was having tests.
He said last week that Polanski was “worn out”.
The Oscar-winning director of Chinatown and Rosemary’s Baby was arrested in Zurich, where he was due to attend a film festival, on Sept 26 on a US warrant over child sex offence charges dating back to 1977.
He has been regarded as a fugitive by US authorities since he fled the country a year later after admitting to unlawful sexual intercourse with 13-year-old Samantha Geimer.
The Swiss newspaper Blick reported on its website that Polanski was taken to a hospital in the Zurich area on Friday morning.
It quoted a legal source in Bern who said the hospital stay “was probably nothing serious”.
Polanski had to stay in bed in hospital for a day or two to treat a medical problem which pre-dated his arrest, the source said, without elaborating.
The French consul-general, Jean-Luc Faure-Tournaire, said on Friday he was concerned about the health of the director, who has dual French and Polish nationality.
Mr Faure-Tournaire visited the prison in Winterthur, near Zurich, but did not say if he was able to meet Polanski.
He said the Swiss authorities had behaved “very properly”.
The Swiss authorities have opposed bail for the director and referred the matter to the tribunal court in the town of Bellinzona, where an appeal has been lodged.
Mr Faure-Tournaire said a final decision on whether Polanski would be released on bail was expected “in the next few days”.
I used to live in Switzerland and have gone to the hospital for a couple of minor issues. I haven’t been to the specific hospital outside Zurich where Polanski is receiving treatment for his aversion to jail. The hospital I went to was amazing though. There was no wait and both times I was there I had the best care in the nicest facility I’ve ever experienced. (Switzerland has other issues like most places, but the hospital was great.) Given how clean and well run the country is, I would assume that most of the hospitals are excellent like the one I went to. Even if they’re closer to US hospitals, does Polanski deserve to go to the hospital instead of being locked up? Hell no. Put him back in jail where he belongs.
Paris Hilton had her sick pass revoked after she tried to pull the same stunt. She ultimately went to jail for over 40 days for violating her DUI probation. This guy did something much, much worse and has lived a life of luxury for over 30 years. It’s time he faced justice. There’s also no way he should be allowed to be out on bail. He’s been on the run for decades and it’s not like he can be trusted to stay in Switzerland while he awaits extradition.