Prosecutor in Strauss-Kahn Case Rejects Calls to Step Down

Posted July 7th, 2011 at 12:10 am (UTC-5)
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The New York prosecutor handling the sexual assault case against former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn has rejected calls to step down.

Attorneys representing the hotel maid who accuses Strauss-Kahn of attempted rape asked New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance on Wednesday to recuse himself from the case. They say Vance leaked information damaging the credibility of their client. However, a spokesman for Vance dismissed the request, calling it “wholly without merit.”

The two sides met in New York on Wednesday to possibly discuss the case, which was jeopardized last week after several media reports cast doubt on the testimony and character of the alleged victim. Following the meeting, prosecutors stated that the “investigation is continuing.”

The ex-IMF chief was released from house arrest in New York last week after prosecutors said the 32-year-old maid had changed details about what she did immediately after the alleged attack by Strauss-Kahn. In addition, a law enforcement official says soon after the incident, the maid spoke of possibly making money off of it in a recorded telephone conversation with her boyfriend.

Strauss-Kahn has denied the charges. He is due to appear in a New York court on July 18.

Separately, a lawyer for French author Tristane Banon filed a criminal complaint against Strauss-Kahn on Tuesday, alleging that he tried to rape her in 2003 during an interview in his Paris apartment.

Lawyers for Strauss-Kahn said earlier this week they would file a slander suit against Banon. Strauss-Kahn has called her account “imaginary.”