Het zit er dik en lang in, dat de zaak rond oud IMF-opperhoofd Dominique Strauss Kahn met een enorme sisser afloopt. De betrokken O-mmer heeft gisteren al de zak genomen. Ondanks het overvloedig bewijs, dat DSK en Nafissatou wel degelijk een close encounter of the first kind hebben gehad.
Maar wat blijkt? Dat het Guinese parelhoen een Hirsi Ali-kunstje heeft geflikt bij haar asielaanvrage, mogelijk betrokken is geweest bij handel in verwarrende middelen en een bajesklant heeft gebeld over de verdeling van de te verwachten DSK-buit.
En daarmee staan haar verklaringen over de gedwongen hops-séance volgens de Amerikaanse wijsneuzen op de tocht.
En dat loopt eigenlijk keurig parallel met het nieuws dat wij op 15 juni jl. serveerden. Bij een Franse teevee-onderneming ligt een reportage schietklaar waarin melding wordt gemaakt van eerdere ongedwongen (let op de dubbele betekenis) sparringrondjes van het Frans-Guinese duo. Komt die reportage nu op de buis?
Awel, dat is nog maar de vraag. De onderneming werd in het recente verleden al vaker verrast met smurfinvallen, waarbij zelfs journalisten de petoet inzeilden. En nu DSK binnen niet al te lange tijd zijn schoenveters terug krijgt komt het de République Francaise waarschijnlijk slecht uit om nog meer shit over deze affaire de Champs Elysées op te keilen. Wij? Wij blijven erbovenop zitten. Stay tuned.
Eerder vandaag werd bekend dat de aanklagers in New York ermee akkoord zijn gegaan dat voormalig IMF-topman Dominique Strauss-Kahn voorlopig kan worden vrijgelaten. Dat meldde het Amerikaanse Bloomberg TV.
Strauss-Kahn wordt beschuldigd van poging tot verkrachting van een kamermeisje. De Fransman kan voorlopig niet naar zijn vaderland. De Amerikaanse overheid houdt zijn paspoort. Hij heeft wel zijn borg van 1 miljoen dollar teruggekregen.
Allies of former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn have said he could make a political comeback in France now he has been freed from house arrest in the US.
Before being accused of sexually assaulting a hotel maid in New York on 14 May, Mr Strauss-Kahn was tipped as a possible French presidential candidate.
But doubts have since emerged about the credibility of the maid, and the case is reportedly close to collapse.
On Friday a judge ordered Mr Strauss-Kahn released on his own recognisance.
His is now free to travel in the US, although he cannot leave the country and must appear in court again later this month.
Mr Strauss-Kahn, who resigned as head of the International Monetary Fund to defend himself, vigorously denies the charges.
Mr Strauss-Kahn had earlier been the favourite to be the Socialist Party's candidate for the French presidency in May 2011.
The BBC's Christian Fraser in Paris says that regardless of events in court, the expectation is growing here in France the case will ultimately collapse.
And if that happens, the only person who can rule his out of next year's contest is Mr Strauss-Kahn himself, our correspondent adds.
The last Socialist Prime Minister, Lionel Jospin, said: "If we hypothesise that Dominique is cleared of all suspicion and all charges, which I obviously hope will happen, then it will be first down to him to decide... and then it will be down to the Socialists to decide."
A Socialist MP, Jean-Marie Le Guen, said he thought it likely that Mr Strauss-Kahn would stand.
"Yes, he will be present for the presidential campaign," he said.
"If what we heard... is true, that the American justice will free him and re-habilitate him, give him back his honour and dignity. Then, since Dominique Strauss-Kahn is a fighter, he will fight in our country."
The list for nominations is due to close on 13 July - five days before his next scheduled court appearance. But the senior Socialist, Francois Hollande, said the deadline could be extended.
Our correspondent says there are though plenty in France who hold Mr Strauss-Kahn in high admiration for the way he has conducted himself in court, there is sympathy and renewed hope among his staunchest allies.
A judge in New York lifted the strict bail conditions imposed on Mr Strauss-Kahn, amid intense speculation that the sexual assault case against him was faltering.
He had been under house arrest since posting a $6m bail bond.
When the 62-year-old appeared in court, prosecutors were forced to admit that they were reassessing the strength of the evidence against him - although the charges that he attempted to rape a hotel maid still stand.
In a letter submitted to the court, the prosecutors said that the maid had given false testimony to a grand jury, omitting the fact that she had cleaned another room before alerting a supervisor to her claims of sexual assault.
"I understand that the circumstances of this case have changed substantially, and I agree the risk that he would not be here has receded quite a bit. I release Mr Strauss-Kahn at his own recognisance," Justice Michael Obus told the court.
The maid claims that Mr Strauss-Kahn chased her down a hallway in his expensive hotel suite in the Sofitel hotel before sexually assaulting her.
However, unnamed law enforcement officials have now told US media the accuser has repeatedly lied since the alleged attack.
The officials believe the woman also lied on her application for asylum, particularly over an allegation that she had been raped while at home in Guinea. They also suspect she has links to drugs dealers and money-laundering.
Mr Strauss-Kahn's lawyer, William Taylor, said he believed the next step would lead to the complete dismissal of the charges.
But the maid's lawyer, Kenneth Thompson, maintained that his client's story was genuine and that Mr Strauss-Kahn was guilty of sexual assault charges.
"From day one she has described a violent sexual assault that Dominique Strauss-Kahn committed against her," Mr Thompson said, adding that Mr Strauss-Kahn bruised the maid's body and threw her to the floor.
"She has never once changed a single thing about that account. The district attorney knows that," he added. "The only defence Dominique Strauss-Kahn has is that this sexual encounter was consensual. That is a lie."
NEW YORK - De Amerikaanse justitie gaat de aanklachten tegen de voormalige IMF-topman Dominique Strauss-Kahn intrekken. Het Openbaar Ministerie twijfelt aan de geloofwaardigheid van de vrouw die 'DSK' heeft beschuldigd.
Dat meldden Amerikaanse media dinsdag op basis van verschillende bronnen binnen justitie.
Waarschijnlijk gebeurt dit op de volgende zittingsdag op 18 juli. Strauss-Kahn is aangeklaagd wegens verkrachting van een kamermeisje in een hotel in New York.
Strauss-Kahn (62) werd anderhalve maand geleden opgepakt. Vanwege de beschuldigingen stapte Strauss-Kahn op bij het Internationaal Monetair Fonds en moest hij zijn ambities bij de komende Franse presidentsverkiezingen op een laag pitje zetten.
De rechtbank in New York hief vorige week vrijdag al zijn huisarrest op. Omdat het huisarrest is opgeheven, heeft Strauss-Kahn zijn borgsom van 1 miljoen dollar teruggekregen. Hij kan de Verenigde Staten echter niet verlaten, omdat de Amerikaanse overheid zijn paspoort nog niet teruggeeft.
Maandag werd bekend dat de Franse schrijfster en journaliste Tristane Banon een aanklacht gaat indienen tegen de voormalige IMF-topman, wegens een vermeende aanranding in 2003.
There’s an old English ditty, “a young lady of Kent,” that ends with these lines:
“she knew what it meant, but she went.”
Eight years after she went, Strauss-Kahn’s French accuser says she didn’t know what it meant. If what I have read about the charge of attempted rape now being brought against Strauss-Kahn in France is correct, eight years ago a young French woman agreed to meet Strauss-Kahn alone in an apartment that was not his address. She claims that, despite her protests, Strauss-Kahn persisted in sexually aggressive behavior. She construes, or perhaps misconstrues, his behavior as attempted rape.
If the woman’s account is true, there is an innocent interpretation. By agreeing to the meeting, she sent a signal that she did not intend to send and which Strauss-Kahn interpreted, or misinterpreted, to mean that she was sexually available.
If this is the story, a French court would realize that, however frightening it was for the young woman, it was a misunderstanding and not an attempted rape. Strauss-Kahn would be guilty of boorish behavior, but this is not yet a crime.
French skepticism would explain why the charge lay dormant for eight years and came to life on the heels of the New York case, which has now fallen apart. The certainty with which the New York police, prosecutor, and American media initially treated Strauss-Kahn’s guilt created credibility for the French woman’s accusation. Certainly, the prospect of Strauss-Kahn’s conviction on the New York charges would give a French lawyer more confidence in the French woman’s story.
I offer this not as an excuse for Strauss-Kahn, who is much too horny for his own good, but as an innocent explanation of an event that also has non-innocent explanations.
For example, according to the French press, Strauss-Kahn predicted that his favorable standing in the election polls would result in Sarkozy, or the interests behind him, paying a woman one million euros in order to bring sex charges against him in order to knock him out of the presidential race.
We also know from press reports that the New York hotel maid had a French attorney who was assigned the task of bolstering her case for damages by finding some French victims of Strauss-Kahn. If the French case continues after the collapse of the New York one, Strauss-Kahn’s attorneys will certainly investigate any contact between the hotel maid’s attorneys and the French woman’s attorneys.
We also know from the French press that Sarkozy’s political operatives knew of Strauss-Kahn’s arrest before the New York Police announced it. This introduces the element of conspiracy.
How will it end?
If the strength of the French case depends on the New York case, the French attorney will advise his client to drop the proceedings.
If the French case is perceived as one of extortion and not justice, the case will fall apart.
If the French public becomes convinced that conspiracy is involved, it will be electoral curtains for Sarkozy, and Strauss-Kahn will be the next president of France.
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is the father of Reaganomics and the former head of policy at the Department of Treasury. He is a columnist and was previously an editor for the Wall Street Journal. His latest book, “How the Economy Was Lost: The War of the Worlds,” details why America is disintegrating.
Werd IMF-president Dominique Strauss-Kahn in de val gelokt? De eerste complottheorieën duiken op nadat de Fransman werd gearresteerd op verdenking van aanranding en vrijheidsberoving.
Feit is dat de arrestatie van Strauss-Kahn over de aantijging en de – vermeende – poging tot verkrachting) op een buitengewoon ongelegen moment komt. En dat niet alleen omdat Strauss-Kahn een afspraak had met bondskanselier Angela Merkel om te praten over de problemen in de eurozone. ...
France's opposition Socialists claimed that the timing of the call raised questions about whether there was any official involvement in the arrest of the former head of the International Monetary Fund.
Mr Straus-Kahn is a Socialist party heavyweight and polls suggested he was favourite to become France's next president should he run in elections next year.
There had been a string of allegations since the 62 year-old's arrest on May 14 implying that he was the victim of a set-up or conspiracy, allegedly involving the French-owned Accor group, which owned the Sofitel hotel in Manhattan where the sex assault was alleged to have taken place.
"All is not clear in the behaviour of Sofitel and Accor group management and there could have been links between the Accor group before or after the affair and perhaps certain secret service groups," said François Loncle, a Socialist MP.
Michèle Sabban, the Socialist vice-president of the Paris area regional council, went further, claiming Mr Strauss-Kahn had been the victim of a "political attack".
She questioned Mr Sarkozy's links with the Accor group and New York police chief, pointing out that the president had recently awarded the American official with the Légion d'Honneur – France's highest honour.
However Accor's security chief, René-Georges Querry, dismissed conspiracy claims. He said he received a call at about 11.45pm French time, roughly an hour after Mr Strauss-Kahn's arrest, as he boarded an Air France flight back to Paris.
He confirmed that he had "immediately" phoned Ange Mancini, who coordinates national intelligence at the Elysée palace. He said he rang him because of his post and because he was a close "friend". Mr Querry long held a senior police post before going into the private sector.
"I merely relayed information that was already public in New York," he told Le Journal du Dimanche, adding that this was four hours after the maid made her sex attack claims to hotel management.
"As for suggesting that I had some kind of influence over New York police from Paris, that's sheer madness."
Accor sources said it was not unusual for the group to contact the government in the event of an international emergency.
The case against Mr Strauss-Kahn has been on the verge of collapse since the prosecution questioned the credibility of her testimony and released the Frenchman without bail.
Despite legal expert claims the case is heading for dismissal, the prosecution is pursuing its investigation. Adding weight to her rape claims yesterday, a psychological report of the maid shortly after the alleged incident found her state of shock credible.
"It is evident that this woman is re-living and perceiving very strong mental images of her assault," wrote a care worker at the Saint-Luke's-Roosevelt hospital, in extracts published by Le Parisien newspaper yesterday.
She was clearly "perturbed and affected" by it, it went on.
Whatever the outcome of the US case, Mr Strauss-Kahn now faces legal woes back in his native France. Tristane Banon, a goddaughter of his second wife, filed a criminal complaint in Paris last week accusing him of trying to rape her eight years ago. Her mother has said he once confided: "I don't know what came over me. I lost my mind." Mr Strauss-Kahn's lawyers dismissed Miss Banon's claims as "imaginary".
Dominique Strauss-Kahn at New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan on Friday, July 1, 2011.
Updated 5:24 p.m. | The Manhattan district attorney’s office and the lawyers for Dominique Strauss-Kahn have agreed to postpone the next hearing in the sexual assault case against him for two weeks in order to give both sides more time to conduct their investigations, according to a letter filed with the court on Monday.
The move — which pushes the next hearing to Aug. 1 from July 18 — comes as prosecutors have been weighing whether to dismiss the charges against Mr. Strauss-Kahn because of what they have characterized as issues with the credibility of his accuser.
The three-sentence letter from Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Orbon to Justice Michael J. Obus, who is presiding over the case in State Supreme Court in Manhattan, said both sides were jointly requesting an administrative adjournment.
“Both parties request that the case be adjourned to August 1,2011,” Ms. Illuzzi-Orbon wrote. “ The purpose of this adjournment is to facilitate both parties continued investigation in this matter.”
In a statement, Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers, William W. Taylor III and Benjamin Brafman, said, “We hope that during this time, the district attorney will make the necessary decision to dismiss the case against Mr. Strauss-Kahn.”
Mr. Strauss-Kahn, the former managing director of the International Monetary Fund, has been charged with sexually assaulting a hotel housekeeper who came to clean his suite at the Sofitel New York in May. But in recent weeks, investigators have uncovered serious credibility issues with the housekeeper, leading prosecutors to agree that Mr. Strauss-Kahn could be freed from house arrest.
Erin M. Duggan, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus R. Vance Jr., said only that the investigation was continuing.
The lawyer for Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s accuser, Kenneth P. Thompson, predicted that the district attorney’s office would not dismiss the charges.
“At the end of the investigation, we expect the district attorney’s office to stand by the victim and take her case to trial,” he said. “Justice requires no less.”
While Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s defense team has maintained that he would not plead guilty to any crimes, prosecutors have not given an indication whether they would simply dismiss the case. In recent days, some community leaders have come forward asking the district attorney’s office to press forward, despite the credibility issues with the accuser, a 32-year-old Guinean immigrant.
Mr. Thompson has been at odds with the district attorney’s office, even writing a letter asking Mr. Vance to recuse himself. Mr. Thompson has said that although the woman has had problems in her personal life, her story about what happened inside the hotel room – that Mr. Strauss-Kahn forced her to perform oral sex – has remained mostly consistent.
One of the main credibility issues of the accuser is that she lied on her application for asylum, saying that she was gang raped in her home country even though that was not true, prosecutors said. Prosecutors also said that the woman altered her account of what she did after she said she was attacked. Initially, she told investigators she waited in an area in the hallway before reporting it to her supervisor. Later, however, she said she cleaned a nearby room before reporting the attack to her supervisor, according to prosecutors.
NEW YORK - Het kamermeisje dat IMF-topman Dominique Strauss-Kahn heeft beschuldigd van poging tot verkrachting in New York, heeft haar eerste interviews gegeven.
Ze zegt zo haar naam te willen zuiveren. ''Vanwege hem noemen ze mij een prostituee'', zei ze tegen weekblad Newsweek.
''Ik wil dat hij naar de gevangenis gaat. Ik wil dat hij weet dat hij op sommige plaatsen zijn macht niet kan gebruiken. Dat hij zijn geld niet kan gebruiken.''
Good Morning America
De 32-jarige Nafissatou Diallo wordt maandag ook verwacht in de veelbekeken tv-show Good Morning America. De interviews komen circa 1 week voordat Strauss-Kahn op 1 augustus weer voor de rechter moet verschijnen.
De advocaten van Strauss-Kahn reageerden zondag boos. Ze zeiden dat de vrouw probeert om de publieke opinie op te hitsen tegen de Franse politicus.
Volgens hen orkestreert de advocaat van het kamermeisje, ''een ongekend aantal media-gebeurtenissen om druk uit te oefenen op de aanklager.'' De aanklager had eerder twijfels geuit over de betrouwbaarheid van het kamermeisje.
In het Newsweek-interview vertelt het kamermeisje gedetailleerd over het incident. Volgens haar werd ze hard beetgepakt door Strauss-Kahn, hoewel die kleiner is dan zij. Haar kleren werden weggescheurd en haar borsten en vagina hardhandig betast.Daarna werd ze op haar knieën geduwd. ''Hij hield mijn hoofd zó hard vast'', vertelt ze.
''Hij bewoog en maakte geluid. Hij zei: uhh, uhh, uhh, zuig mijn... - ik wil het niet zeggen.''
Daarna spuugde ze alles uit. ''Ik rende weg. Ik ging niet terug. Ik was zó nerveus. Ik was zó bang, ik wilde mijn baan niet kwijtraken''.
Het hele incident duurde hooguit 15 minuten, misschien veel minder. Volgens een bron die de telefoongegevens kent, belde Strauss-Kahn met zijn dochter 9 minuten nadat Diallo de kamer binnenkwam.
Het kamermeisje keerde daarna terug naar de kamer. Haar baas trof haar aan, totaal van streek. Die waarschuwde vervolgens de bewaking en liet de politie bellen.
Strauss-Kahn ontkent de aanklachten. Zijn advocaten noemden het interview van Diallo een 'misplaatst circus' en beschuldigden het kamermeisje ervan de publieke opinie voor zich te willen winnen.
"Mevrouw Diallo is de eerste eiser in de geschiedenis die een mediacampagne gebruikt om de aanklager ertoe te bewegen een persoon te vervolgen van wie ze geld wil zien", zeiden Benjamin Brafman en William Taylor, de advocaten van Strauss-Kahn.
Three months after authorizing Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s swift indictment after his arrest on sexual assault charges, the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus R. Vance Jr., has decided to ask a judge to dismiss the case, a person briefed on the matter said on Sunday.
Mr. Vance’s decision will end one of the most closely watched prosecutions in New York in decades with no determination on whether the encounter between Mr. Strauss-Kahn, who was then the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, and a hotel housekeeper who went to clean his suite was criminal or consensual, several law enforcement officials have said.
While there has been widespread speculation that Mr. Vance would drop the case, it is nonetheless an extraordinary turn of events, for both Mr. Strauss-Kahn, 62, an enormously powerful international banker and a leading candidate for the French presidency before his arrest, and his accuser, Nafissatou Diallo, a 33-year-old immigrant from Guinea.
Her credibility as a witness began to crumble after prosecutors discovered what they characterized as a series of lies she had told, though none bore directly on her version of the encounter with Mr. Strauss-Kahn.
Mr. Strauss-Kahn, who was led out of a police building in handcuffs in May and held under house arrest until his bail conditions were relaxed last month, would be free to return to France after a judge, responding to a motion from the district attorney, formally dismissed the seven-count indictment.
The outcome would leave Ms. Diallo with no recourse to pursue criminal charges against the Frenchman. But she has filed a civil lawsuit seeking unspecified monetary damages from Mr. Strauss-Kahn for what the suit called a “violent and sadistic attack” that humiliated and degraded her.
Mr. Vance’s office has readied a motion known as a dismissal on recommendation, which one person briefed on the matter said would detail the reasons he and his aides believe that the case cannot be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.
Mr. Vance’s decision in the highly charged case, which ultimately became a credibility contest of sorts between Ms. Diallo and Mr. Strauss-Kahn, was said to have grown out of prosecutors’ assessment that her repeated lies, including multiple denials that she had given any consideration to Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s money, would open her to withering cross-examination. A day after the encounter, she and a friend who was in jail had a recorded telephone conversation about Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s wealth, a fact that the investigators would not learn until six weeks later, after Ms. Diallo had been asked repeatedly about the subject.
She is the only witness who could testify to the central allegation in the case: that Mr. Strauss-Kahn forced her to perform oral sex.
One law enforcement official involved in the investigation said no single problematic detail about Ms. Diallo’s background, or even all of them put together, had undermined the prosecution’s faith in its ability to present a viable case. Indeed, the official noted, it is common for witnesses and complainants who testify to be vulnerable to attacks on their credibility, either because their accounts have varied, or because they have self-interested motives for giving evidence, like avoiding jail or, occasionally, winning civil settlements.
In the Strauss-Kahn case, the official said, prosecutors came to believe that Ms. Diallo seemed unwilling to take responsibility for telling the truth.
“We deal with witnesses with these kinds of problems every day,” the official said. “With her, we had to drag the details of the lies out of her over weeks. It might have been different if she had let all the air out in a day or two. Every time she was confronted with her lies, she would blame someone else — someone told her to say this for asylum, someone else took advantage of her bank accounts, someone else did the taxes.”
Besides their legal and ethical responsibilities to disclose Ms. Diallo’s untruths, members of the prosecution team could have been called in a criminal trial to testify about her untrue statements to them — possibly transforming prosecutors into witnesses for the defense.
Asking a jury to believe Ms. Diallo beyond a reasonable doubt had become untenable, according to a senior official involved in the case.
“We couldn’t tell the jury that she kept lying to us but that they should believe her,” the senior official said.
But Mr. Vance’s decision will probably draw fire on several fronts, including from black leaders and women’s groups who have urged him to allow a jury to weigh the facts and render a decision.
Ms. Diallo’s lawyer, Kenneth P. Thompson, acknowledged that his client may have credibility issues, but he said that other evidence weighed the case in her favor, including other hotel workers who saw Ms. Diallo in a distraught state shortly after she said she was attacked.
“You must also consider the overwhelming physical evidence that Mr. Vance and his prosecutors pointed to just weeks ago,” Mr. Thompson said. “Forensic evidence does not lie.” Even one of the controversial phone conversations with her friend in jail corroborated her account of the attack, Mr. Thompson said. Ms. Diallo described the assault to her friend just as she had the previous day to detectives and prosecutors, according to Mr. Thompson.
Law enforcement officials have said, however, that though the forensic evidence in the case shows that a sexual encounter occurred, it does not prove that it was forcible.
Some critics have contended that Mr. Vance’s office is to blame for some of the problems that arose in the case. They pointed to the prosecutors’ decision, shortly after Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s arrest, to reject an agreement under which Mr. Strauss-Kahn would be freed on bail — a decision that forced them to move swiftly to seek an indictment from a grand jury rather than take more time to investigate details of the case.
The more deliberative course, these critics say, would have given prosecutors a chance to learn more about the housekeeper and perhaps avoid their early pronouncements that she was a powerful and “unwavering” witness.
Since Mr. Strauss-Kahn was taken into custody hours after the May 14 incident at the Sofitel New York, the case has played out in an almost carnival-like atmosphere, with legions of representatives of foreign news outlets camped out in front of the courthouse in Lower Manhattan. The drama has dominated the headlines in France, where his arrest and star turn in handcuffs before the cameras sparked outrage.
From his first court hearing, Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers indicated that a sexual encounter did take place in the suite but suggested that whatever occurred was consensual.
Mr. Strauss-Kahn, a leading figure in the Socialist Party who stepped down from his post at the I.M.F. because of his arrest, was charged with attempted rape, sexual abuse, criminal sexual act, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching.
Prosecutors were initially successful in getting a judge to order him held without bail, saying their case was strong and corroborated by physical evidence. They also said the housekeeper had given a compelling and unwavering account of what happened inside the hotel room.
A State Supreme Court justice eventually granted Mr. Strauss-Kahn bail on $1 million cash and $5 million bond. But he was held under extraordinary conditions in which he remained under house arrest in a town house in TriBeCa, monitored by an armed guard. He could leave the town house only under limited circumstances.
Those bail restrictions were lifted in a stunning reversal by prosecutors on July 1, about six weeks after the encounter.
At a court hearing, the district attorney’s office revealed that it had uncovered several facts damaging to the housekeeper’s credibility. Ms. Diallo had lied in her asylum application to immigration authorities and falsely told prosecutors she had been gang raped in her native country, according to a letter filed by prosecutors. She also was untruthful in her tax returns, the letter said.
Another area was not aired in court, but was discussed with Ms. Diallo’s lawyer before then. On June 29, when prosecutors’ confidence in Ms. Diallo had already eroded, they received summary translations of phone conversations that she had with a man in immigration detention on May 15, the day after her encounter with Mr. Strauss-Kahn. By then, Ms. Diallo had told the authorities on several occasions that she had never given consideration to possible compensation from a man as wealthy as Mr. Strauss-Kahn.
On the night of June 30, Mr. Thompson said that he was called by Mr. Vance’s chief assistant, Daniel R. Alonso, and was informed that the case had serious problems, specifying the phone conversation with the man in detention.
Mr. Thompson indicated that Mr. Alonso “stated the victim said ‘words to the effect’ that ‘this guy has a lot of money. I know what I’m doing.’ ”
Mr. Thompson has vehemently disputed the prosecutors’ interpretation of the recorded conversation, in which the two spoke in Fulani, a language of Guinea.
Later, when he listened to the tape with a translator, Mr. Thompson said the prosecutors had mischaracterized its contents. The district attorney’s office later had several translations from Fulani prepared, and these produced different texts that covered the same subject. The official involved in the investigation said there could be “no question as to the substance of the conversation.”
While prosecutors might have wanted Ms. Diallo to hold off on filing a civil suit, they had no objection to her seeking damages for injuries she might have suffered at the hands of Mr. Strauss-Kahn. But the phone call, the official said, signified another episode of Ms. Diallo’s not being forthright.
During the month of June, as it became apparent to prosecutors that the case was crumbling, lawyers for Ms. Diallo and Mr. Strauss-Kahn, had some discussions about a payment that would settle any civil claims, and presumably also protect Mr. Strauss-Kahn from criminal prosecution.