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Dominique Strauss-Kahn Accuser Goes Public As Her Lies Are Exposed

Friday, 29 July 2011
     

The hotel maid who made allegations of attempted rape against former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn has gone public to restate her claims, after it emerges that she lied in her allegations.

Nafissatou Diallo who has claimed Dominique Strauss-Kahn raped her, has waived her anonymity, in order to make many appearances in the media and restate her allegations.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, 62, who was head of the International Monetary Fund was famously arrested on a plane about to take of for a scheduled flight to France. He was required to post $1m bail, electronically tagged, and held under house arrest with an armed guard. No evidence was offered to support the allegations.

At the time, Dominique Strauss-Kahn was expected to stand for election in the forthcoming French presidential elections and was favourite to unseat incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy. Following his arrest he had to step down as head of the IMF and abandon his run for the presidency. The allegation clearly benefited Nicolas Sarkozy and there was speculation that the claim was possibly politically motivated.

There is no evidence either to support the claim made by the maid or the counter claim that Nicolas Sarkozy's supporters arranged the allegation, but it quickly emerged that the maid (who earns minimum wage) had received £62,000 of unexplained payments into her bank account at the time of the allegation. She has also made false allegations of rape before, and lied to obtain entry into the US.

She was also recorded discussing the financial benefits of making such an allegation, the day before she did, with a man who was incarcerated for suspected drug dealing at the time. During this call it was clear she knew he was a wealthy VIP, although she claimed she did not know this when she made the allegation, the following day. She has already received thousands of dollars of luxury hotel accommodation, during which time, it is alleged she has had many paying gentleman callers.

It has become apparent that the DA suspect she has worked as a prostitute before and since the allegations, and that accounts for much of the £62,000 of unexplained deposits found in her bank account.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn admits having sex with her, but claims it was consensual. The maid has admitted that there was no force, but claims she felt coerced, and feared he would have her fired if she refused, although she denies knowing that he was a VIP at the time. It has been suggested that the maid voluntarily had consensual sex with him, with an expectation of payment, but when he later refused to pay her any money, she decided to make the allegation of rape.

Since Dominique Strauss-Kahn's dramatic and high profile arrest, the alleged victim has changed her account a number of times, originally claiming to have fled the hotel room and hidden before seeing him leave his room and enter the lift before running to her supervisor to report the incident. She has since admitted that she cleaned two rooms in the hotel, including the 'crime scene', before deciding to make the claim to her supervisor. She has since claimed that both herself and her daughter have been traumatised by the experience.

Rape is a very serious crime, and a very serious allegation. Sadly, where no physical force has been used it is often unsupported by evidence, and rarely occurs in front of witnesses. It is a difficult area for policing and prosecution, but where one party is as discredited and unreliable as Nafissatou Diallo, and the other is the head of the IMF with so much to lose, it seems incredible that such claims could be considered plausible.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn has been released from bail, and the case against him is widely expected to be dropped entirely in the absence of any evidence against him, and the evidence that Nafissatou Diallo made up the allegations for financial gain, probably after he refused to pay her for sex.

Of course that does not change the fact that Dominique Strauss-Kahn has admitted cheating on his wife, and he does not emerge unscathed. He may not be facing jail but his reputation has been damaged, and his presidential bid destroyed. He has not commented on the case, other than to deny the allegations and state his belief that Nafissatou Diallo is financially motivated.

Now that it seems that a criminal conviction is not possible, Nafissatou Diallo is intending to make a civil claim against him, where it is possible to win if the court thinks it is more likely than not that she is telling the truth, even if it can't be proved beyond reasonable doubt. It seems unlikely that she could win, given the credibility gap.

This case does highlight the damage that false allegations have against innocent people accused of crime, and question whether the system should be changed to offer anonymity to the accused as well as the accuser, as in a the case of a false allegation, the accused is the victim, and the accuser is the criminal. By the time the duplicity is revealed, the damage is already done.

 

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