IMF chief arrested; charged with attempted rape
PRESS TRUST OF INDIA
New York, May 15: IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a likely candidate for French President in 2012, was arrested today and charged with attempted rape and sexual assault on a hotel maid here, after being pulled out from a Paris-bound airplane, minutes before it was to take off.
62-year-old Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the Washington-based International Monetary Fund since 2007, was taken off an Air France plane's first-class cabin at the John F Kennedy International Airport and apprehended by detectives of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
The IMF chief will plead not guilty to all charges, his lawyer William Taylor said.
The New York Police Department arrested Kahn at 2:15 am Sunday "on charges of criminal sexual act, attempted rape, and an unlawful imprisonment in connection with a sexual assault on a 32-year chambermaid in the luxury suite of a Midtown Manhattan hotel yesterday" about 1 pm, Deputy Commissioner Paul J Browne, the department's chief spokesman, said.
Browne said that it was about 1 pm local time yesterday when the maid entered Strauss-Kahn's USD 3,000-a- night suite of Sofitel New York hotel, believing it was unoccupied.
The IMF chief was in the shower when the 32-year-old maid entered his room at the hotel on West 44th Street in Manhattan yesterday.
As she was in the foyer, "he came out of the bathroom, fully naked, and attempted to sexually assault her," Browne was quoted as saying by NYT. "He grabs her, according to her account, and pulls her into the bedroom and onto the bed," Browne said, adding he locked the door to the suite.
"She fights him off, and he then drags her down the hallway to the bathroom, where he sexually assaults her a second time," he said.
MSNBC television reported that in the bathroom, the IMF chief forced the maid to perform oral sex on him and tried to remove her underwear.
At some point during the assault, the woman broke free and "fled, reported it to other hotel personnel, who called 911. When the police arrived, he was not there," Browne said, adding Strauss-Kahn appeared to have left in a hurry.
Investigators found his cellphone in the room, which he had left behind, and one law enforcement official said that investigation uncovered forensic evidence that would contain his DNA.
The maid was taken by police to hospital and was being treated for minor injuries. A spokesman for the hotel said its staff is cooperating with the investigations.
Strauss-Kahn drove to the airport to catch the Parisbound Air France Flight 23. As he settled down in the first class cabin, two detectives of the Port Authority suddenly boarded the plane and took him out, John P L Kelly, a spokesman for the agency said.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 May 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 May 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 16 May 2011 00:00:00 IST
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