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Judge Dismisses Charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn

Harold Cunningham/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A judge in New York on Tuesday threw out the sexual assault case brought against Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former International Monetary Fund chief and French presidential hopeful.

The ruling came shortly after the judge rejected a plea by Strauss-Kahn's accuser, hotel maid Naifissatou Diallo, to have the Manhattan district attorney's office replaced by a special prosecutor.

New York Criminal Court Judge Michael Obus granted a motion from prosecutors to dismiss all charges against the international power broker known simply as DSK, ending a highly publicized prosecution without answering the question of what really happened between Strauss-Kahn and the maid assigned to clean his hotel suite.

"I see no basis to deny that application" to dismiss the charges, Obus said. The judge stayed the order pending any appellate issues.

Defense attorneys said Strauss-Kahn would not return Tuesday to France but to his townhouse in New York.

Following the ruling, Strauss-Kahn walked out of court without answering questions from reporters, but released a statement shortly after saying he was grateful that the "nightmare" was over.

What was once viewed as a "strong" case based on an "unwavering" accuser fell apart amid "substantial" questions about the maid's credibility.

Assistant District Attorneys Joan Illuzzi-Orbon and Artie McConnell said the accuser "provided shifting and inconsistent versions of the events" and therefore they can't be sure "of what actually happened."

"We were no longer able to credit her version beyond a reasonable doubt," Illuzzi-Orbon said in court.

"We respectfully request that the court dismiss the indictment," she said.

During the investigation into the incident, prosecutors say, Diallo presented three different versions of the alleged assault and lied under oath. Her credibility "cannot withstand the most basic evaluation," prosecutors said in the motion.

Strauss-Kahn had long maintained he was innocent of the charges.  

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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