People magazine is reporting that Charlotte Lewis, a British actress who appeared in Roman Polanski's 1986 flop Pirates, held a press conference today alleging the director "forced himself" on her when she was 16 years old in a Paris apartment.
"[Polanski] sexually abused me in the worst possible way when I was just 16," Lewis, 42, announced to the press in the Los Angeles office of her attorney. "He knew [how old I was] when he met me and forced himself upon me in his apartment in Paris. He took advantage of me and I have lived with the effects of his behavior ever since it occurred. I've traveled to the U.S. at my own expense to make sure that justice is finally done and that Mr. Polanski gets what he deserves. All I want is justice."
Polanski, whose most recent film, The Ghost Writer, was released in February, is currently under house arrest in Switzerland fighting extradition efforts by L.A. authorities. Polanski fled the U.S. in 1978 after pleading guilty to unlawful sex with a minor.
In response to the new charges, Polanski's lawyer issued the following statement: "We don't have any information about statements made at a Gloria Allred press conference today, but we do know that the District Attorney continues to refuse to provide the Swiss government with accurate and complete information relevant to the extradition issue."