Friday 24 November 2017

Strauss-Kahn innocent, but I’m worried, says loyal wife

Henry Samuel, Paris

Anne Sinclair – the wife of disgraced Dominique Strauss-Kahn's - has said she has "no doubts" he is innocent of rape charges as his family has come out in support of the former IMF chief.

The claim by the former star TV presenter and art heiress, coincided with the release of previously censored extracts of a book by a female journalist alleging Mr Strauss-Kahn sexually assaulted her.

In an email sent to Straus-Kahn's biographer, Sinclair writes: "No doubts about the facts. But very worried nevertheless." "Dominique is a good, honest, upright man. I believe in him more than ever.

‘‘Our couple is solid in any ordeal. We will get through this drama together, dignified and upright, hand in hand," she goes on.

Her email dates back to May 19, five days after Strauss-Kahn was arrested while awaiting take-off to Paris from New York on charges of sexually assaulting a chambermaid from the Sofitel hotel.

The previously unpublished exchange will feature in refreshed edition of Michel Taubmann's book, The Real Novel of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, out next Thursday.

The morning Sinclair wrote the email, her husband was granted bail for $5 million and allowed to leave Rikers Island where he had spent the previous three nights.

Strauss-Kahn's sister, Valérie, also leaps to his defence in the book, saying: "I know my brother. I am sure he is incapable of violence against a woman."

"All our education is based on words, dialogue, never violence. Dominique is kind, generous, more sensitive than one might think. I don't know what happened in New York, but I can testify that the values of our education are the opposite to all physical violence."

The family words of support came with the release of extracts from a book by Tristane Banon, a 32-year old female journalist who intends to file for charges against Strauss-Kahn for sexual assault in France.

Banon interviewed Strauss-Kahn in 2003 for her book, Errors Admitted. But her editor removed a chapter in which she recounts her "interview" with the former French finance minister which took place in a garret flat with a bed.

In the extract, she says he gave her a boring "compilation of TV declarations without interest".

"The atmosphere became heavy," she goes on cryptically. "All I wanted to do was leave. I ended up doing so half an hour later with a promise to return which I would not keep."

Her account is nothing like as graphic as the one she gave in 2007 on a French cable TV chat show, in which she said Strauss-Kahn came at her like a "rutting chimpanzee", and that she had to beat him off with slaps and kicks.

The biographer questioned why she made no reference to the alleged assault in the written version.

Her lawyer David Koubbi replied: "She never related in writing the account of this assault. So it's normal to find nothing on the subject in the passages removed before (the book's) release on the insistence of those close to DSK." Banon has refused to testify in Strauss-Kahn's trial in the US to back up the claims of the maid of Guinean origin.

"I don't wish DSK to be convicted after an intervention on my part whose consequence would be to link the two dossiers which have nothing to do with each other," said Koubbi.

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