Former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn was released from house arrest without bail on Friday as prosecutors investigated questions about the credibility of the woman he is charged with trying to rape.
Following are some key facts about Strauss-Kahn.
* EARLY LIFE:
-- Strauss-Kahn, born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, on April 25, 1949, began his career as assistant professor, then professor of economics at the University of Paris in 1978. He was then appointed Deputy Commissioner of the Economic Planning Agency (1981-1986).
-- He was elected a deputy to the National Assembly (1986), where he chaired the Finance Commission from 1988 to 1991.
LIFE AT THE TOP:
-- An architect of France's economic recovery in the late 1990s, Strauss-Kahn, known as DSK, served in a Socialist government as finance minister between 1997 and 1999. He cut the public deficit to qualify France for the euro and took steps that led to the privatization of some state firms.
-- He was forced to resign from Socialist Prime Minister Lionel Jospin's government in 1999 after he was caught up in a corruption scandal. A court later cleared him.
-- Strauss-Kahn lost out on the Socialist nomination for the 2007 presidential election but was surprisingly proposed as a candidate to run the International Monetary Fund by the eventual winner, Nicolas Sarkozy, a political rival.
-- After taking over the IMF in November 2007, Strauss-Kahn won praise for making sure the Fund was at the center of global efforts to cope with the financial meltdown of 2007-9. He introduced sweeping changes help countries in need, and oversaw reforms that gave emerging market countries greater voting power in the institution.
-- Strauss-Kahn has been no stranger to controversy about his private and public life. He was investigated by the IMF in 2008 over possible abuse of power involving an affair with a senior IMF economist who subsequently left the fund. The probe cleared him of abuse of power and he apologized publicly for a serious error of judgment.
-- On May 14 he was arrested and charged with the attempted rape and sexual abuse of a hotel maid in New York. Five days later he resigned from the IMF amid international pressure.
-- He pleaded not guilty in court and has vehemently denied the allegations. He would serve up to 25 years in prison if convicted.
* POLITICAL TURNAROUND:
-- Despite being based in Washington while running the IMF, he continued to spend a lot of time in France, fanning speculation that he was considering re-entering politics as a Socialist candidate for the next presidential election in 2012.
-- His arrest all but ended his presidential hopes, just weeks before he had been expected to declare his candidacy.
(Additional writing by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)