Dominique Strauss-Kahn's assertion that his encounter with a New York hotel maid was "a moral failing" rather than attempted rape has not persuaded her lawyers to drop civil action against the former IMF chief.

"/> Dominique Strauss-Kahn's assertion that his encounter with a New York hotel maid was "a moral failing" rather than attempted rape has not persuaded her lawyers to drop civil action against the former IMF chief.

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DSK regrets ‘moral failing’ in sex with maid

Dominique Strauss-Kahn's assertion that his encounter with a New York hotel maid was "a moral failing" rather than attempted rape has not persuaded her lawyers to drop civil action against the former IMF chief.

DSK regrets 'moral failing' in sex with maid

Strauss-Kahn on Sunday said he had let down both his loyal wife and the French people, and admitted he had abandoned his hopes of running for president next year, but denied he had sexually assaulted two women who brought charges against him.

The 62-year-old Socialist politician and economist was speaking in public for the first time since he returned to France after the New York criminal case against him was dropped — and since being questioned by French detectives over the second case.

Interviewed on the TF1 network news by Claire Chazal, a friend of his wife, Strauss-Kahn adopted a combative tone but regretful words, trying to rescue his reputation while writing off his immediate political prospects.

“What happened involved neither violence nor constraint: no criminal act,” he told Chazal sternly when asked what had happened in Sofitel Manhattan’s suite 2806 on May 14th, shortly before his arrest on sex assault charges.
Strauss-Kahn said what happened in his seven-minute encounter with Nafissatou Diallo was a “moral failing of which I am not proud” but insisted police found “no scratches, no wounds, no sign of violence” on the maid’s body.
He did not elaborate on what precisely had happened in the suite, a point which Daillo’s lawyers were swift to pick up on.

“What was interesting is what he didn’t say,” Douglas Wigdor, who represents Guinean maid Diallo, told AFP by telephone in the United States.

“He didn’t say anything about what actually happened.”

Wigdor slammed the interview and said his client would pursue civil action against Strauss-Kahn.

“I look forward to questioning him under oath in my office. We are going to pursue that case aggressively,” the lawyer said.

Strauss-Kahn on Sunday also denied attacking Tristane Banon, a young French author who is the daughter of a family friend, is 30 years his junior and who has lodged a complaint alleging he tried to rape her in a Paris flat in 2003.

Again, Strauss-Kahn did not deny that there had been an encounter, but said: “I was interviewed as a witness. I told the truth that in this meeting there had been no aggression, no violence, I will say no more.

“The version that has been reported is imaginary, slanderous,” he added.

But, despite his denials, he admitted he could “obviously” no longer be a candidate for next year’s presidential elections, and said he would play no role in the debate surrounding the upcoming Socialist primary.

Feminists protested in front of the studio as Strauss-Kahn arrived and a poll showed more than half of voters hoped he would abandon his presidential ambitions — or what he called “his appointment with the French.”

In what was clearly a measured and well-prepared response, Strauss-Kahn accepted he would have to spend time on the sidelines and miss next year’s race, but hinted at a future political comeback.

He also firmly insisted he would not cut a deal to cut short Diallo’s civil case against him in the New York courts, and vowed to pursue a defamation case he has lodged against Banon in response to her claim.
He also suggested darkly that there may have been some plot to entrap him: “A trap? It’s possible. A plot? We’ll see.”

Four months ago Strauss-Kahn was expected to win the Socialist nomination for next year’s French presidential election, and polls made him favourite to go on to sweep centre-right incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy from office.

But that was before Diallo accused him of assault and attempted rape.

Strauss-Kahn was arrested, handcuffed and briefly jailed, but the criminal trial collapsed when the New York prosecutor said the Guinean maid’s history of deceit and inconsistent testimony made her an unreliable witness.

Strauss-Kahn’s multi-millionaire heiress wife Anne Sinclair has stood by him.
Paris prosecutors have not decided whether or not to charge Strauss-Kahn in the Banon case, but legal observers in France feel it would be a hard case to prove eight years after the events and without physical evidence.

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World unprepared for next financial crisis: ex-IMF chief Strauss-Kahn

The world is less well equipped to manage a major financial crisis today than it was a decade ago, according to Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a former chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

World unprepared for next financial crisis: ex-IMF chief Strauss-Kahn
Former French Economy Minister and former managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Dominique Strauss-Kahn , poses during a photo session in Paris on Thursday. Photo: JOEL SAGET / AFP
In an interview with AFP, the now-disgraced Strauss-Kahn — who ran the fund at the height of the 2008 financial meltdown — also said rising populism across the world is a direct result of the crisis. 
Strauss-Kahn resigned as head of the IMF in 2011 after being accused of attempted rape in New York, although the charges were later dropped. He settled a subsequent civil suit, reportedly with more than $1.5 million.
Q: When did you become aware that a big crisis was brewing?
A: When I joined the IMF on Nov 1, 2007, it became clear quite quickly that things were not going well. That is why in January 2008, in Davos, I made a statement that made a bit of noise, asking for a global stimulus package worth two percent of each country's GDP. In April 2008, during the IMF's spring meetings, we released the figure of $1,000 billion that banks needed for their recapitalisation.
Q: Did the Bush administration grasp the danger of Lehman Brothers going bankrupt?
A: No, and that is why Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson decided not to save Lehman, because he wanted to make an example of it in the name of moral hazard. Like everybody else, he considerably underestimated the consequences. Allowing Lehman to go under was a serious mistake. Especially because only a week later they were forced to save the insurer AIG, which was much bigger.
Q: Ten years on, are we better equipped to deal with a crisis of such a magnitude?
A: No. We have made some progress, particularly in the area of banks' capital adequacy ratios. But that is not nearly enough. Imagine Deutsche Bank suddenly finding itself in difficulty. The eight percent of capital it has at its disposal are not going to be enough to solve the problem. The truth is that we are less well prepared now. Regulations are insufficient.
Q: How so?
A: After 2012-2013 we stopped talking about the need to regulate the economy, for example concerning the size of banks, or concerning rating agencies. We backtracked, which is why I am pessimistic about our preparedness. We have a non-thinking attitude towards globalisation and that does not yield positive results.
Q: Do we still have international coordination?
A: Coordination is mostly gone. Nobody plays that role anymore. Not the IMF and not the EU, and the United States president's policies are not helping. As a result, the mechanism that was created at the G20, which was very helpful because it involved emerging countries, has fallen apart. Ten years ago, governments accepted leaving that role to the IMF. I'm not sure it is able to play it today, but the future will tell.
Q: Do you believe that Donald Trump's election is a consequence of the crisis?
A: I believe so. I'm not saying that there was a single reason for Trump's election, but today's political situation is not unconnected to the crisis we lived through, both in the US with Trump and in Europe.
Q: Connected how?
A: One of the consequences of the crisis has been completely underestimated, in my opinion: the populism that is appearing everywhere is the direct outcome of the crisis and of the way that it was handled after 2011/2012, by favouring solutions that were going to increase inequalities.
Quantitative easing (by which central banks inject liquidity into the banking system) was useful and welcome. But it is a policy that is basically designed to bail out the financial system, and therefore serves the richest people on the planet.
When there's a fire, firemen intervene and there is water everywhere. But then you need to mop up, which we didn't do. And because this water flowed into the pockets of some, and not of everyone, there was a surge in inequality.
By AFP's Antonio Rodriguez