19 Oct 2011

Writer drops civil case against Strauss-Kahn

11:04 pm on 19 October 2011

A writer who accused former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn of attempted rape says she won't pursue a civil case against him after French prosecutors dropped a criminal investigation into her allegation.

Tristane Banon has accused Mr Strauss-Kahn, 62, of trying to rape her in a Paris flat where she went to interview him eight years ago, Reuters reports.

Ms Banon, 32, had initially indicated she would start a civil case against the one-time French presidential favourite after prosecutors ruled there was not enough evidence for a criminal trial for attempted rape.

The Paris public prosecutor's office said there was evidence suggesting sexual assault, but the statute of limitations on that lesser charge had already expired.

Mr Strauss-Kahn quit as head of the International Monetary Fund in May this year after police arrested him in New York on charges of attempting to rape a hotel maid. He denied any wrongdoing.

In August, US prosecutors decided to drop charges against him, citing concern over the credibility of the hotel maid, Nafissatou Diallo.

The case, however, ended his chances of competing against President Nicolas Sarkozy in April's presidential elections, which he had been favourite to win.