Polanski was granted bail earlier this month (Nov09) and will spend Christmas under house arrest at his alpine chalet in Gstaad, Switzerland.
The moviemaker’s sister-in-law believes the French leader has played a large part in making the release happen.
Mathilde Seigner tells Le Parisien newspaper, “I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it is thanks to the President that Roman has been freed, but he has been super. The President has been very effective.”
Recent rumours suggested Sarkozy’s wife, Carla Bruni, had urged her husband to intervene as Polanski and his wife, actress Emmanuelle Seigner, are longtime acquaintances of the singer.
Sarkozy came under fire for offering his support to Polanski in October (09) after insisting a 76-year-old man should not have been arrested for crimes he committed decades ago.
The president said at the time, “I understand that people are shocked by the gravity of the accusations against Roman Polanski, but… it is not a good administration of justice to do this 32 years after the facts when the person concerned is today 76 years old.”
Polanski, who fled to France in 1978 as he awaited sentencing for sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl at a Hollywood party, was arrested by Swiss authorities while attending a film festival in Zurich in September (09).