Dominique Strauss-Kahn is filing a $1 million countersuit against the New York City hotel maid who accused him of sexual assault, saying she seriously damaged his reputation with what he calls a bogus allegation.
The disgraced French politician and former head of the International Monetary Fund said in court papers filed Monday that the Guinean-born Nafissatou Diallo made a “malicious and wanton false accusation” when she said he assaulted her one year ago after she arrived to clean his hotel suite.
The married Strauss-Kahn, 63, says whatever happened was consensual, and he has denied doing anything violent.
The criminal case against Strauss-Kahn was dismissed after prosecutors lost faith in Diallo’s credibility. She then filed a civil lawsuit accusing him of assault. A judge this month rebuffed Strauss-Kahn’s claim that he had diplomatic immunity.
Diallo’s lawyers, Kenneth W. Thompson and Douglas H. Wigdor, called the countersuit a “desperate ploy.”
One of Strauss-Kahn’s attorneys said the countersuit should come as no surprise to Diallo.
“She is directly responsible for his being arrested, imprisoned and subjected to extraordinary pain, anguish and expense,” William W. Taylor III said in a statement.
Diallo, now 33, says Strauss-Kahn chased her down, tried to yank down her pantyhose and forced her to perform oral sex.
Strauss-Kahn was arrested, resigned from the IMF and spent several days behind bars and three months on house arrest before prosecutors dropped the criminal case, saying Diallo had lied about her background and changed her account of what she did after leaving Strauss-Kahn’s hotel room.
The countersuit was first reported by the New York Post.
Diallo’s lawyers called Strauss-Kahn’s defamation claim an example of the “misogynistic attitude” of a man who now faces preliminary charges of being involved in a hotel prostitution ring in France. As of last week, French investigators also were studying accusations that Strauss-Kahn may have been involved in a rape during a sex party in a Washington hotel in 2010. Separately, a French writer accused him last year of having tried to rape her during a 2003 interview, an accusation prosecutors said was too old to try.
Strauss-Kahn denies all the allegations.
The Associated Press generally doesn’t name people who report being sexually assaulted unless they come forward publicly, as Diallo has done.
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