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Strauss-Kahn denied bail

world Updated: May 15, 2011 01:23 IST
Yashwant Raj

A New York judge denied Dominique Strauss-Kahn bail on Monday and ordered the IMF chief detained, two days after he was pulled off a plane and accused of trying to rape a Manhattan hotel chambermaid. Judge Melissa Jackson said he should be remanded because he was “a flight risk.”

Earlier in the day, as Strauss-Kahn sat on a bench waiting for his arraignment in a New York court, a French radio station reported he was having lunch with his daughter at the time he allegedly tried to rape a hotel housekeeper.

The station sourced this information to Strauss-Kahn's legal team, but did not cite names. The office of Benjamin Brafman, who is representing the IMF chief, said no statement had been made on the case.

The arraignment will be Strauss-Kahn's first appearance in court — a suspect must be produced in a court within 48 hours of arrest, and the charges against him will be read out to him for the first time.

His prosecution is being driven by recently named New York county district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., son of Cyrus Vance who served as secretary of state to former president Jimmy Carter. The 62-year-old IMF chief was identified by his victim in a police line-up on Sunday night (this is US version of India's test identification parade).

And he agreed to a forensic examination on Monday morning for scratches on his body.

He appeared in court wearing the same suit he was wearing at the time of arrest.

The IMF chief is accused of sexually assaulting a housekeeper, 32, at a Manhattan hotel on Saturday. He was hauled off the plane and handed over to New York police.

Strauss-Kahn is a French politician widely speculated to be preparing for a run against President Nicholas Sarkozy next April. Opinion polls have shown him leading the other opposition candidates.

But this was not the first time Strauss-Kahn has found himself in trouble. The man, a married father of four, is known as “the great seducer” and there is at least one proven case against him for which he has apologised.

With inputs from Reuters