Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s reputation of inappropriate behavior with women was so alarming that as long as four years ago, French President Nicolas Sarkozy warned him to control his behavior just prior to his assumption of the managing directorship of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to a report in The Times newspaper of Britain.
Over there [U.S.] they don't joke about this sort of thing, Sarkozy reportedly told Strauss-Kahn.
Your life will be passed under a magnifying glass. Avoid taking the lift alone with interns. France cannot permit a scandal.
Strauss-Kahn, the former finance minister of France, took the top job at the IMF in November 2007.
Strauss-Kahn is currently sitting in a jail cell in New York’s Rikers Island prison on charges that he sexually assaulted a hotel chambermaid. He is also under suicide watch.
The Times reported that after news broke over the weekend that Strauss-Kahn had assaulted (or raped) the woman in the posh Times Square hotel, Sarkozy rolled his eyes.
We did warn him, Sarkozy told his aides, according to The Times.
Sarkozy has also reportedly told his aides to keep a “low profile” over the Strauss-Kahn saga.
Meanwhile, reports are proliferating of Strauss-Kahn’s history of improper behavior with the fairer sex over the years.
Strauss-Kahn and his attorneys will reportedly claim that he and the maid had consensual sex.
However, the alleged victim’s attorney, Jeffrey Shapiro scoffed at that notion.
There was nothing about any aspect of this encounter between this young woman and the defendant which was remotely consensual or could be construed as consensual, either physical contact or sexual contact, he told US television.
In effect, what his defense amounts to is attempting to accuse the victim and so she can't step forward.”
Meanwhile, some female members of France’s ruling Union pour un Mouvement Populaire (UMP) party have accused their Socialist opponents of conducting a “guilty silence” over Strauss-Kahn’s egregious sexual behavior. (Strauss-Kahn is a leading Socialist).
Brigitte Barèges, a UMP member of parliament, said: I think there has been a guilty silence on the part of Dominique Strauss-Kahn's entourage. He has benefited from certain impunity.
Valérie Pecresse, the higher education minister, told reporters:
I'm shocked to note that some people see in this affair only one victim: [Strauss-Kahn].”
Similarly, Gisèle Halimi, a feminist attorney, said: I am disappointed with the Left. I don't get the feeling I've heard [prominent female Socialists] express their compassion for the [alleged] victim. I regret it, as if there's one thing that should prevail over friendship and clan spirit it is the respect of women. I am convinced that if this affair had happened in France, we would have never found out about it.