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Americas

Strauss-Kahn called women 'equipment', leaked police transcript reveals

media Judge Douglas McKeon who presides at the Strauss-Kahn-Diallo hearing in … AFP/Don Emmert

Former IMF boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn called women “equipment” when organising sex sessions between his friends and prostitutes, according to an alleged French police transcript. The civil case against Strauss-Kahn opened in New York on Wednesday, two days after he was charged with pimping in France.

"Do you want to (can you?) come to a great sexy nightclub in Madrid with me
(and some equipment) on 4 July?" Strauss-Kahn text-messaged a businessman friend on one occasion, according to the transcript published in the authoritative daily Le Monde.

Dossier: The Strauss-Kahn affair rocks France, IMF

The same day he mentioned a “present” given to artist Titouan Lamazou, the paper says.

“The word ‘equipment’ refers to a person of the female sex,” Strauss-Kahn allegedly told interrogators, admitting that it was perhaps “inappropriate".

Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers say they will lodge a complaint that their clients rights have been violated and accuse Le Monde of quoting selectively from the transcript.

While admitting that he lived the life of a “libertine”, even while he was head of the International Monetary Fund, Strauss-Kahn stuck by his story that he did not know that many of the women involved in swingers’ parties he attended were prostitutes.

Perhaps he was “naïve”, he allegedly told police.

But some of the women interviewed told investigators that not only did he know but also that he organised some of them, leading to Monday’s shock decision to charge him with “aggravated pimping”, which could mean up to 20 years in jail and fines of up to three million euros.

But one woman, known as Estelle, is said to have told investigators, “We were basically there for DSK [Strauss-Kahn]. We didn’t care about the others.” And another, Marion, says the former Socialist minister demanded to know how much a certain Aurélie was paid, because he wanted to bypass Fabrice Baszkowski, an associate who had organised previous encounters.

Marion also claims that physical force was used to make her comply with some of Strauss-Kahn’s demands and describes “bestial” and violent scenes.

The first hearing of the civil case brought by hotel chambermaid Nafissatou Diallo against Strauss-Kahn was due to open in New York on Wednesday.

His lawyers were to argue that, as IMF boss, he enjoyed diplomatic immunity.

Neither Diallo nor Strauss-Kahn were obliged or expected to attend.

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