Bygones are bygones

Los Angeles -- Filmmaker Roman Polanski's work should be judged on its merits, not on his crime, the victim of a 1977 sexual assault wrote in an op-ed article.

Polanski, 69, is nominated for a best-director Oscar for "The Pianist." The film, up for seven Academy Awards on March 23 including best picture, depicts the Holocaust through the eyes of a Polish pianist who hid from the Nazis.

Polanski pleaded guilty to a charge of unlawful sex with a minor in 1977 but fled the country while on bail and eventually became a French citizen. He is a fugitive from the United States.

In the op-ed article printed in Sunday's Los Angeles Times, Samantha Geimer said Polanski fled to France after a Los Angeles County judge refused to accept a plea bargain arranged by her lawyer, Polanski's attorney and the District Attorney's Office.

Reubens must go to trial

Los Angeles -- A judge refused to dismiss a misdemeanor charge accusing Paul Reubens, the actor best known for playing Pee-wee Herman, of possessing child pornography.

A trial date will be set Friday in Superior Court.

Reubens has pleaded innocent to one misdemeanor count of possessing material depicting children under 18 engaging in sexual conduct. The 50-year-old actor is free on $20,000 bail.

Reubens' representatives have said the actor owned a "vast and valuable" collection of erotica, including some items a century old. He never knowingly possessed child pornography and bought some of the items in his collection in large lots that he had not opened, according to his spokeswoman, Kelly Bush.

Just let her be

London -- Heather Mills says press criticism following her marriage to Paul McCartney has left her "absolutely wiped out."

"The lowest point of my life has been since the press turned on me really badly, which sounds crazy," she said Saturday. "Now I'm at that stage where I feel absolutely wiped out."

Mills, 35, married the former Beatle last June in Ireland.

"(Paul) is a fantastic, fantastic man, but the stuff that comes with it is very hard to deal with," she said.

Mills, who lost a leg in a traffic accident 10 years ago, said some newspapers had turned against her because she rarely opened up in public. The bad publicity had even caused manufacturers of prosthetic limbs to shun her, she said.

No parking zone

New York -- Police in New York were searching Monday for whoever sprayed bullets into rapper Busta Rhymes' unoccupied sport utility vehicle Friday night a few minutes after he parked it on a Manhattan street.

Nobody was hurt in the shooting outside Violator Records, which represents Rhymes, 50 Cent, Missy Elliott and other artists. It was the second time in a month the offices were the scene of gunfire.

Rhymes, whose real name is Trevor Smith, arrived in a black GMC Suburban around 10 p.m. Friday, police said. Fifteen minutes later, he discovered six shots had been fired into the passenger side of the vehicle.


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