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Sunday
May152011

IMF Head Accused of Sexually Assaulting Maid at NYC Hotel

Harold Cunningham/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and a man considered a likely French presidential candidate, was taken into custody by police on Saturday at a New York airport after a hotel maid said he sexually assaulted her.

Authorities said a maid at a midtown Manhattan hotel told police that Strauss-Kahn stepped out of the bathroom naked as she was cleaning the room and assaulted her.

Strauss-Kahn was taken into custody aboard an Air France jet at John F. Kennedy International Airport, just as the doors were closing to take off on a flight to Paris.

Detectives from the New York Police Department picked up the IMF president from Port Authority police and took him to east Harlem for questioning at the department’s Special Victims Unit.

Strauss-Kahn faces a charge of attempted rape.

NYPD officials notified Port Authority police of the allegations against Strauss-Kahn and asked that they "take him off the plane," Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Browne told ABC News.

Port Authority detectives did so moments before the flight's departure, Browne said.

Browne said the maid notified hotel managers of the alleged assault and the hotel contacted police, who arrived at about 1:30 pm.

"She reported the attack to hotel officials who called police," Browne said.

When police arrived they found Strauss-Kahn's cell phone, Browne said.

"It appeared he left in a hurry," he said.

Authorities said the hotel maid's account "is credible."

According to senior police officials Strauss-Kahn has no diplomatic immunity, despite his position with the IMF, which makes him technically an administrative official with the United Nations.

On Sunday the IMF issued a statement saying that it had no comment on the case and that “the IMF remains fully functioning and operational.”

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