His lawyer said he will appeal.
Strauss-Kahn's lawyers have argued that the investigating judges in the case are biased. The case revolves around a suspected luxury prostitution ring in northern France.
A court in the French city of Douai has decided to retain the preliminary charges.
Strauss-Kahn's lawyers have said he attended "libertine" gatherings but did not know some women present were paid.
The case is one part of an intercontinental legal saga which exposed Strauss-Kahn's active sex life and buried his French presidential ambitions.
Strauss-Kahn reached a settlement in New York last week with a hotel maid who accused of him of trying to rape her in May 2011.