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Polanski breaks his extradition silence

Fugitive film-maker Roman Polanski has broken his silence about extradition demands by the US over a 33-year-old under-age sex case.

Polanski (76) said America's main purpose was to serve him "on a platter to the media".

The Oscar-winning director, who is under house arrest in his Swiss alpine chalet, laid out his case against extradition in an online magazine run by one of his staunchest supporters, French philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy.

"I have had my share of dramas and joys as we all have, and I am not going to try to ask you to pity my lot in life," he wrote. "I ask only to be treated fairly like anyone else."

Polanski suggests the case against him is unjust and riddled with problems. Each argument begins with the phrase: "I can remain silent no longer."

One of Polanski's complaints is that Los Angeles County district attorney Steve Cooley, "who is handling this case and has requested [the] extradition, is himself campaigning for election and needs media publicity!"

Mr Cooley is running for the California attorney general post.

District attorney's spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said the office "will withhold comment until the Swiss make a decision on his fugitive status".

Swiss authorities are trying to decide whether to extradite Polanski to Los Angeles for having sex in 1977 with a 13-year-old girl.