The lawyers filed a 13-page document requesting a judge to reconsider jail time for Polanski should he return to the United States, according to the Wrap. “Mr. Polanski was as justified in fleeing this Court’s illegal conduct as he was to flee the Germans who invaded Poland,” the filing read, the Wrap reported.
Polanski fled the Nazi regime in Poland in 1943, according to his biographer, and went on to direct Academy Award winner The Pianist, which centers on a Jewish ghetto during World War II in the country’s capital, Warsaw.
Polanski left the U.S. in 1978 before his sentencing for pleading guilty to unlawful sex with a minor. The director had been charged with six felonies after allegedly having sex with a 13-year-old girl. He fled to France, which does not extradite its citizens, fearing imprisonment and deportation, and has lived there since.