Paris prosecutors have opened a preliminary investigation into accusations by a French writer that former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her.
Tristane Banon filed a criminal complaint this week saying that Strauss-Kahn attacked her in an empty flat in 2003 during an interview.
A judicial official said that the prosecutor's office has opened a preliminary investigation.
The probe could take months or years and may still not result in a trial.
Mr Strauss-Kahn, long seen as a strong contender for the French presidential election next year, quit as head of the International Monetary Fund after a New York hotel maid accused him of attempted rape in May.
Meanwhile, lawyers for the hotel maid want the Manhattan District Attorney to step down from the case, and have called on Governor Andrew Cuomo to appoint a special prosecutor.
Cyrus Vance, Jr.--the District Attorney for New York County--has been under fire for his handling of the case, ever since he announced last Friday the 32 year old accuser has credibility problems.
This resulted in Mr Strauss-Kahn’s release from house arrest.
Earlier this week, a group called "100 Blacks in Law Enforcement" stood outside the District Attorney's entrance and demanded the case be taken away "from this dysfunctional office."