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Dominique Strauss-Kahn linked to prostitution ring


Mary Tracy
WVoN co-editor

Former International Monetary Fund chief who once hoped to become a French presidential candidate, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, has been named in transcripts leaked from an investigation into alleged pimping at luxury hotels in northern France.

Judges are probing claims that hotels in Lille, northern France, served as a base for a prostitution network with clients including senior police officers, lawyers and politicians.

Strauss-Kahn, 62, was arrested earlier this year and charged with trying to rape Nafissatou Diallo, a chambermaid at the Sofitel hotel in Manhattan. He was later cleared of the charges (see WVoN story).

Eight people are under formal investigation, including a senior police officer, a local barrister and businessmen. Five have been imprisoned.

According to leaked transcripts published in the French media, Strauss-Kahn’s name was mentioned in several statements made to investigators.

The investigation raises questions about the links between police and business figures and the underworld of sex work in France and Belgium. Prostitution involving people over the age of 18 is not illegal in France but pimping and living off the profits is.

For Strauss-Kahn, the scandal follows the ruling by a French court that he had sexually harassed French writer Tristane Banon in 2003. No charges were pressed due to a three-year statute of limitations.

Banon, like Diallo, also had to face public accusations of being a liar. She has just published a novel about her experience.

Douglas Wigdor, an American lawyer for Ms Diallo, said the scandal “only reinforces what we already knew” – namely that Strauss Kahn “considers women as objects“.

WVoN comment: This story merely confirms what many feminists already suspected: that Strauss-Kahn is a danger to all women everywhere.

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