Roman Polanski‘s sexual assault victim made an impassioned plea Friday to end the director’s 40-year legal ordeal, saying she felt more abused by the legal justice system than by the man who allegedly drugged, raped and sodomized her when she was 13.

Samantha Geimer, 54, made her first public court appearance in the matter and told Judge Scott Gordon she supports either an outright dismissal or a hearing that would sentence Polanski without his having to appear in person.

“The trauma of the ordeal that followed was so great that, you know, the brief encounter with him that evening that was unpleasant just faded and paled,” Geimer said outside a courtroom in Los Angeles Superior Court. “It just wasn’t as traumatic for me as everybody would like to believe it was,” Geimer said.

“I implore you to consider taking action to finally bring this matter to a close as an act of mercy to myself and my family,” she added.

Geimer was 13 years old when Polanski plied her with champagne and part of a sedative pill and had sex with her during a photoshoot he said he was doing for French Vogue. He was arrested and served six weeks in prison. Polanski fled the country in 1978 on the eve of his sentencing. The warrant prevented him from collecting his Academy Award for best director for his 2002 film The Pianist. He was also nominated for 1974’s Chinatown and 1979’s Tess.

Judge Gordon, who praised Geimer for her courage and elegant words, said he would take the matter under consideration.

He has consistently ruled against Polanski’s repeated requests for similar outcomes and has said the director must appear in court to resolve the case.

Geimer had long supported Polanski’s efforts to end the case that limits his movements to three European countries, but it was the first time she spoke in favor of him in court. She said she had suffered four decades of insults and mistreatment and has been hounded by the news media.


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