No Polanski release until Monday
Conditions for his bail have yet to be met, say SwissSTOCKHOLM -- Director Roman Polanski will remain in a Swiss jail until at least Monday, authorities said, as conditions for his bail have yet to be met.
The 76-year-old filmmaker was granted $4.5 million bail this week on condition he remain under house arrest at his Swiss chalet in the ski resort of Gstaad.
Swiss Justice Ministry spokesman Folco Galli said Friday that more time is needed to fulfill the conditions of Polanski's house arrest, which will include the director surrendering passports and travel documents and be fitted with a electronic monitoring bracelet. The Justice Ministry will issue a statement as soon as Polanski is freed, Galli said.
Polanski's luxury chalet will be a step up from the cell where he has been staying since his arrest in September on a decades-old charge of having sex with a 13-year-old girl. But the director is still facing extradition to the U.S. to face justice.
The Swiss Justice Department is expected to rule on Polanksi's extradition in the coming weeks but if he appeals, the case could drag on for months. Polanski faces up to two years in a U.S. prison if extradited and found guilty.
Polanksi's impending release may mean he will be able to finish work on his new film, "The Ghost" on time before the end of this year. There has been speculation that "The Ghost," an adaptation of the Robert Harris political thriller starring Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor, could premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in February.
Polanski was originally indicted on six charges, including rape, for drugging the 13-year-old Samantha Geimer with a Quaalude and champagne and having sex with her back in 1977. He pleaded guilty to one count of sex with a minor. But Polanski skipped bail and fled the country before sentencing, claiming the judge intended to toss out his plea bargain and serve him a long prison term.
Polanski has lived in France ever since, and has moved freely -- often visiting his Swiss residence. But for the Los Angeles prosecutor's office he remained a fugitive, so when Polanski traveled to Zurich on Sept. 26 to receive a lifetime achievement award, they asked Swiss police to arrest him. He has been in custody ever since.