IMF Chief Refused Bail as Court Told of Chambermaid's Ordeal

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Byline: From Tom Leonard in New York

THE full graphic details of Dominique Strauss-Kahn's alleged brutal sex attack on a New York hotel maid were revealed in court yesterday as the International Monetary Fund head was refused bail as a 'flight risk'.

As France went into political meltdown over the scandal engulfing a leading candidate for the country's presidency, the haggardlooking finance chief appeared before a woman judge at the Manhattan criminal court.

Strauss-Kahn, 62, who should have been meeting European finance ministers in Brussels, was instead forced to listen grim-faced and silent as prosecutors outlined the severity of the charges against him.

After sexually assaulting the 32-yearold housekeeper and attempting to rape her, Strauss-Kahn forced her to perform a sex act, said Assistant District Attorney John McConnell. Judge Melissa Jackson denied a $1million bail application after prosecutors argued that the Frenchman, arrested on a Paris-bound plane hours after the alleged attack at the Sofitel hotel, was not only a flight risk but had possibly carried out a similar assault outside the U.S. Lawyers would not elaborate, but they may be referring to claims by French writer Tristane Banon that Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her nine years ago. She indicated yesterday that she will this week attempt to press charges in Paris.

Strauss-Kahn denies all the charges against him in New York, which include two counts of a first degree criminal sexual act, two counts of sexual abuse, attempted rape, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching.

A one-page indictment provided further lurid claims. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Police said the alleged victim picked Strauss-Kahn out of an identity parade on Sunday. He also gave detectives permission to examine him for physical evidence of scratches and DNA from his accuser.

But his lawyers said he has an alibi that was out for lunch at the time of the alleged attack - reportedly with one of his four daughters.

And in France there are growing claims that he is the victim of a set-up - exploiting his famed weakness for women - by his political enemies.

One opponent yesterday claimed that the IMF chief had sexually abused several maids at the Sofitel hotel. Without offering proof of his claims, Michel Debre, an outspoken politician from French president Nicolas Sarkozy's party, said: 'It's not the first time that DSK is involved in this kind of actions at the Sofitel. …