IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn faces sex charge

// News | Top Stories | IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn faces sex charge
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font
Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director, International Monetary Fund (IMF) smiles during a Thomson Reuters Newsmaker event at the Newseum in Washington, December 16, 2010.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief, Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested and charged on Sunday with sexually assaulting a New York hotel maid, in a scandal that appeared to wreck his hopes of running for president of France.

The charges threatened to create a leadership vacuum at the IMF, overseer of the global economic system, and threw wide open the French presidential election next April, for which opinion polls had made Strauss-Kahn the front-runner.

One of his lawyers, Benjamin Brafman, told Reuters that his client "will plead not guilty." The 62-year-old Socialist, a key player in the response to the 2007-9 global financial meltdown and in Europe's debt crisis, was taken off an Air France plane about to leave for Paris from John F Kennedy International Airport on Saturday.

New York police spokesman Paul Browne said he was charged with a criminal sexual act, unlawful imprisonment and attempted rape. He is expected to go before a state court later on Sunday.

The arrest caused shock and disbelief in France, where a government spokesman called for caution and respect for the presumption of innocence.

"The news we received from New York last night struck like a thunderbolt," said Socialist leader Martine Aubry, appealing for party unity.

Francois Bayrou, a centrist opponent of Strauss-Kahn, said: "All this is completely astounding, immensely troubling and distressing. If the facts prove true ... it's something degrading for all women. It's terrible for the image of France."

Far-right leader Marine Le Pen said her rival's presidential hopes had been crushed. Strauss-Kahn and Le Pen have led recent opinion polls ahead of conservative President Nicolas Sarkozy, even though the chief of the IMF had yet to declare his candidacy.

In a statement on its website, the fund declined to comment on the case, saying only that it "remains fully functioning and operational." But a Greek official told Reuters the arrest could cause some delays to a European Union/IMF bailout for Athens, in which Strauss-Kahn was closely involved.

Maid's account

"We must wait until things settle and see if it's true or a provocation, one of Strauss-Kahn's French-based lawyers, Leon Lef Forster, said. "We must be especially careful not to get into a media circus and we must wait until things are clear."

A 32-year-old maid filed a sexual assault complaint after fleeing the $3,000-a-night hotel suite at the Sofitel in Times Square where the alleged incident occurred around 1 pm on Saturday, Browne said.

Strauss-Kahn appeared to have fled the hotel after the incident, the police spokesman said.

Browne told Reuters: "She told detectives he came out of the bathroom naked, ran down a hallway to the foyer where she was, pulled her into a bedroom and began to sexually assault her, according to her account.

"She pulled away from him and he dragged her down a hallway into the bathroom where he engaged in a criminal sexual act, according to her account to detectives. He tried to lock her into the hotel room." Strauss-Kahn does not have diplomatic immunity, Browne said.

According to New York state law, a criminal sexual act carries a potential sentence of 15-20 years, the same as attempted rape. Unlawful imprisonment carries a potential sentence of three to five years.

The allegation is a major embarrassment to the IMF, which has authorized billions of dollars of lending to troubled countries and played a major role in the euro zone debt crisis.

France in shock

Popularly known by his initials DSK, the IMF managing director had been expected to declare by late June if he would run for president of France. The latest opinion polls ranked him as a clear winner over conservative incumbent Sarkozy.

"The case and the charges ... mark the end of his campaign and pre-campaign for the presidency and will most likely prompt the IMF to ask him to leave his post," National Front leader Le Pen told i-Tele television.

Conservative Trade Minister Pierre Lellouche said: "I think we have to grant DSK the presumption of innocence. If all this were true it would be damning." Even Strauss-Kahn's political allies were pessimistic.

"The most likely outcome is that this case will stick and even if he pleads not guilty, which he may be, he won't be able to be candidate for the Socialist primary for the presidency and he won't be able to stay at the IMF," said prominent Socialist Jacques Attali.

Strauss-Kahn took over the IMF in November 2007 for a five-year term scheduled to end next year. Before that, he was a French finance minister, member of the French National Assembly and a professor of economics.

Tagged : Obinah John, Nigeria Power Sector, Lottery Winner Poisoned To Death, Majek Fashek, Monkey boy, Kudirat Abiola, Baby factory in Anambra

Headlines Newsview all

Yinka Offehin, 35, Fighting For His Life After Landlady’s Children Cut His Private Parts

A 35-year-old man, Yinka Offehin, is battling for his life at a private hospital in Lagos State after his scrotum was cut by the children ... Full story

Patrick Sawyer’s Aide Shows Signs Of Ebola Virus Infection In Lagos,

Less than 7 days after the death of a Liberian Health Official who came to Nigeria for a conference, another case of Ebola infection has ... Full story

Fourth female suicide attack in Kano kills 6

A female suicide bomber killed six people at a college campus in Kano city today, the fourth time Boko Haram Islamists were suspected of using ...

Asari Dokubo Slams President Jonathan’s Comments On Buhari

The Leader of Niger-Delta Peoples Volunteers Force, Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo-Asari, on Tuesday slammed President Goodluck Jonathan over his comment that Nigeria would have boiled if ...

Chibok girls’ parents, community leaders clash over Jonathan's N100m largesse

Controversy has erupted between parents of the kidnapped girls and leaders of the Chibok community in Abuja over an alleged N100m largesse given by President ...

Oby Ezekwesili: Female suicide bombers may be Chibok girls

Former minister and one of the leaders of the #BringBackOurGirls, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, has raised an alarm on the increasing use of teenage girls as ...

Mallam Nasir El-Rufai loses son in Abuja road crash

Tragedy hit the home of the former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, in the early morning of Tuesday when his son, ...

Blessing Okagbare Wins 100 Metres Gold At Glasgow Commonwealth Games - Video

Blessing Okagbare wins women’s 100 metres gold in 10.85 seconds to increase Team Nigeria’s medals haul at the ongoing Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Okagbare also erased ...

Bomb Blast Rocks Kano Again, Many Feared Dead

Another explosion hit Kano, coming just 24 hours after the state suffered three bomb explosions in different locations. Today’s blast took place at the NNPC ...

Asari Dokubo: "Bomb attack on former Military Head of State was planned by Buhari himself"

This might look weird, but the former militant leader, Dokubo-Asari has alleged that the bomb attack on former Military Head of State was planned by ...

Kano State Catholic Church Bomb Blast Kills 6, Injures 13

2 Bombs went off in northern Nigeria’s main city of Kano, killing 6 people and wounded 13 others on Sunday, a senior police officer said. The ...

Comment on: IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn faces sex charge

Rate this article

0

Featured author

chuky01

Breaking News

Anita Joseph - Though My Body Is Hot, I Don’t Flaunt It

Controversial Nollywood actress, Anita Joseph, is not happy with people who accused her of intentionally exposing her body on social media. The well endowned actress who ... Full story

Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde Is The Most Beautiful Actress In The History Of Nigeria [Pictures]

--and the most trending Nigerian celebrity topic on StumbleUpon.2014 is the year of the Nigeria Centenary and since Amalgamation of the Northern and Southern Protectorates ...

BABES LOVE MONEY: Beautiful Joy Bewaji Tells Guys The Truth

My Dear Bros,I am tired of you whining about your girlfriend. What is it that you want? What are your expectations? She grew up in ...

Money Saga: Press Release By Chibok Community In Abuja

Gentlemen of the Press,We are highly disturbed and disgusted by the recent information circulating in the media over alleged receipt of money by the leadership ...

I Have Serious Crush On Chidinma—Ruggedman Confesses

Michael Stephens Ugochukwu better known as Ruggedman, has disclosed that he loves Chidinma, winner of MTN Project Fames season three.The rapper made this announcement while ...

Charles Novia Alleges Liberian Ebola Victim As Medical Terrorist

Few weeks ago, after the 40 year old Liberian, Mr. Patrick Sawyer was quarantined after he arrived Lagos, Nigeria with symptoms of the Ebola virus ...

IK Ogbonna Lands In Trouble Over Hand On Actress‘Milk Factory’

A selfie posted by Nollywood actor, IK Ogbonna, may have landed him trouble due to what looks like him placing his hand on the milk ...

Ex-Wazobia FM OAP, Matse Shows Off 3-Month-Old Baby

A former staff of Wazobia FM, Matse, who later moved to Nigeria Info radio station in Lagos, but got fired afterwards, has showed off her ...

Femi Adebayo Celebrates Twins’ Birthday (Picture)

Sons of popular Yoruba actor, Femi Adebayo are marking their birthdays today, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. The handsome son of veteran Nollywood actor, Adebayo Salami, ...

Pastor Ashimolowo's Son, Tomi Marries in Grand Style (Pictures)

Recently, son of Pastor Matthew Ashimolowo of the Kingsway International Christian Centre (KICC), Tomi Michael, got married to his sweetheart, Jeneba Kamara. The event held ...