By Adam S. Levy
Radar Staff Writer
French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn pleaded not guilty to charges of attempted rape, sex abuse, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching in a hearing at the New York state Supreme Court in Manhattan on Monday.
Strauss-Kahn entered his plea while surrounded by his attorneys and his wife, celebrated journalist Anne Sinclair.
Strauss-Kahn, 62, is accused of sexually assaulting a maid at the Sofitel hotel May 14; as previously reported, here’s how the alleged incident went down:
The maid claimed she went into Strauss-Kahn’s $3,000-a-night room, thinking it was vacant so she could clean, according to police. She told police that Strauss-Kahn burst out of the bathroom naked, chased her and pulled her into a room, where he forced her to perform a sex act on him and tried to take off her underwear.
The maid, who hails from the West African nation of Guinea, said she broke free and told her hotel co-workers. Strauss-Kahn quickly left the hotel, but left his cell phone on the premises, police said.
Strauss-Kahn, a married father-of-four, was arrested later that day as he tried to return to his homeland on an Air France flight at John F. Kennedy International Airport. While in custody at a Harlem precinct, police said his accuser picked him out of a lineup.
In a letter issued the following week, the embattled Strauss-Kahn resigned from his position as the head of the International Monetary Fund, the organization that oversees global financial policy.
“It is with infinite sadness that I feel compelled today to present to the executive board my resignation from my post of managing director of the IMF,” Strauss-Kahn said. “To all, I want to say that I deny with the greatest possible firmness all of the allegations that have been made against me … I want to devote all my strength, all my time and all my energy to proving my innocence.”
Strauss-Kahn is called DSK in French press, and has been given the nickname “The Great Seducer” for his well-documented way with the ladies. Until the recent incident, French media had tabbed the Socialist as a strong opponent to current President Nicolas Sarkozy in the country’s presidential election next year.
Strauss-Kahn last month was released on $6 million bail and bond, and is under house arrest at a home in New York’s Tribeca area under 24-hour surveillance.
He’s due back in court July 18; Stay with RadarOnline.com for more on this story as it breaks.