Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

'New York Post' slammed for publishing ISIS execution images

Read more

DEBATE

Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza: Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza conflict: 72-hour ceasefire deal sets stage for Cairo talks

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users divided over Darren Wilson

Read more

FOCUS

Spain's El Hierro to become world's first self-powered island

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

A bellwether for what not to do

Read more

ENCORE!

Luc Besson back in action with Scarlett Johansson in 'Lucy'

Read more

FOCUS

Israel's minorities and military service

Read more

  • US forces tried to rescue slain reporter from IS captors

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

  • US attorney general visits Missouri town after fatal shooting

    Read more

  • French village rallies behind besieged elderly British couple

    Read more

  • Brazil’s Silva launches bid after Campos plane crash death

    Read more

  • Netanyahu compares Hamas to IS, Gaza offensive to continue

    Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

  • France’s ex-PM Juppé sets up presidential clash with Sarkozy

    Read more

  • France’s Hollande says global security ‘worst since 2001’

    Read more

  • France urges Iran, others in region, to join fight against IS

    Read more

  • A new view on Normandy landings, 70 years on

    Read more

  • Dozens killed as landslides strike Japan’s Hiroshima

    Read more

  • Suspected Ebola cases in Austria, new drug raises hopes

    Read more

  • WWII anniversary highlights best - and worst - of Paris police

    Read more

  • Headscarf at the beach sparks French MEP’s fury

    Read more

France

Strauss-Kahn says scandal fuelled by 'political agenda'

Video by William HILDERBRANDT

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-04-28

Former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a onetime Socialist presidential candidate, said Friday that his arrest in New York and a subsequent inquiry into alleged sexual assault was orchestrated by those with ties to President Nicolas Sarkozy.

AFP - Former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn on Friday accused his political enemies linked to French President Nicolas Sarkozy of destroying his bid for the presidency.

Strauss-Kahn told The Guardian that his highly public fall from grace was orchestrated by his opponents to prevent him from standing as the Socialist candidate in the French election that culminates next week.

The ex-International Monetary Fund boss had been favored to win the presidential election until May last year, when he was arrested in New York and accused of sexually assaulting a hotel maid, Nafissatou Diallo.

Strauss-Kahn said that although he did not believe the incident with Diallo was a setup, the subsequent escalation of the event into a criminal investigation was "shaped by those with a political agenda."

"Perhaps I was politically naive, but I simply did not believe that they would go that far -- I didn't think they could find anything that could stop me," Strauss-Kahn told the British newspaper.

The Guardian said it is clear that the "they" refers to people working for Sarkozy and his UMP party.

Strauss-Kahn accuses the agents of intercepting phone calls and ensuring that Diallo went to the police in New York to make her accusations.

He believes he was under surveillance in the days before the encounter, and had removed encryption from his phones because of technical problems, the interview said.

He has admitted a sexual encounter with Diallo but says it was consensual.

In New York, a lawyer representing Diallo in her civil lawsuit against Strauss-Kahn dismissed that there had been any political intrigue.

"Utter nonsense, that's all I would say," Douglas Wigdor told AFP.

Polls show that the man who scored a victory in the Socialist party's presidential nomination, Francois Hollande, is expected to win the election run-off against Sarkozy on May 6.

Strauss-Kahn said he was sure he would now be in Hollande's shoes had it not been for the events at the Sofitel hotel in New York on May 14 last year.

"I planned to make my formal announcement on 15 June and I had no doubt I would be the candidate of the Socialist party," he said.

The interview was carried out by US journalist Edward Jay Epstein, whose ebook on the scandal, titled "Three Days in May," is due to be published on Monday.

Strauss-Kahn, 63, based his allegations about the New York incident on his own research into the hotel's CCTV footage and was aided by a private detective service, The Guardian said.

Following his arrest, Strauss-Kahn was paraded in handcuffs, held in prison and then forced to live under house arrest. He quit his job as IMF chief and did not put himself forward as Socialist candidate for the election.

New York prosecutors dropped criminal charges against him in August, saying that the maid's story was undermined by lies and inconsistencies.

A US judge is expected to rule next week on whether the civil lawsuit filed by Diallo, which accuses Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault, can go to court.

The Guardian said Strauss-Kahn had refused to discuss a separate sex scandal that has since erupted in France, saying he was under legal restrictions.

He has been charged over a French investigation into a network that imported sex workers from Belgian brothels to France for orgies in expensive hotels in Lille and Paris.
 

Date created : 2012-04-28

  • JUSTICE

    Strauss-Kahn lawyers seek dismissal of maid's civil suit

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    'Lust’ is not a crime, say Strauss-Kahn lawyers

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    DSK under investigation in prostitution inquiry

    Read more

COMMENT(S)