Tape shows Strauss-Kahn maid not after money: lawyer

28th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

The recording of a phone conversation between a New York maid who has accused the former IMF chief of attempted rape and a jailed friend proves she is not after money, her lawyer said Wednesday.

Nafissatou Diallo "never said the words" attributed to her by a US newspaper that Dominique Strauss-Kahn had a lot of money, her lawyer Kenneth Thompson told reporters, adding she also had the right to pursue a civil lawsuit.

"I'm telling you that certain things were said that were merged together in this quote that was given to The New York Times," Thompson told reporters.

He was speaking after Diallo, 32, and her lawyer spent eight hours with the prosecutors at the Manhattan district attorney's office Wednesday amid questions about her credibility.

The French politician and former head of the International Monetary Fund has denied seven charges of attempted rape and sexual assault arising out of the incident in his Sofitel hotel suite on May 14.

Diallo went public for the first time on Sunday saying she wanted justice as the case against Strauss-Kahn, 62, appeared to crumble and also to clear her name.

The New York Times, in early July, quoted a law enforcement official saying that during a phone conversation with a man jailed for possessing marijuana: "She says words to the effect of, 'Don't worry, this guy has a lot of money. I know what I'm doing.'"

Thompson said both sides had reviewed the recording of the tape Wednesday with an interpreter who spoke Diallo's native Guinean language of Fulani.

"We have been listening to that tape, and that tape shows that the victims never said the words" attributed to her, Thompson said.

"She told that gentleman that 'Someone tried to rape me and that he's a powerful, big man.'"

Meanwhile asked about lodging a civil suit, Thompson said that "at the end of the day, Miss Diallo has the right to assert her own private course of action."

"There is nothing wrong with a woman who's been almost raped to file a lawsuit."

© 2011 AFP

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