New York: Former IMF chief Dominique
Strauss-Kahn`s claims of immunity from a civil lawsuit are
"utterly meritless," lawyers for the hotel maid seeking
damages for an alleged sexual assault has said.
Strauss-Kahn last month filed a petition seeking
dismissal of the suit filed by Nafissatou Diallo, the Guinean
chambermaid who alleged that the one-time French presidential
hopeful tried to rape her in May.
Diallo`s attorneys said in a court filing yesterday that
the former IMF boss`s petition "should be denied in its
entirety as utterly meritless and frivolous," and that the
case should be allowed to proceed.
Criminal charges against Strauss-Kahn were dropped in
August when prosecutors lost faith in Diallo`s credibility,
but she is pursuing a civil case for undisclosed monetary
Strauss-Kahn, a former French finance minister, did not
claim immunity during the criminal case as the alleged assault
happened while he was staying in New York in a personal
He asserts however that his position as the IMF`s chief
executive provides him protection against civil action.
Strauss-Kahn was forced to resign as managing director of
International Monetary Fund when he was arrested and charged
with the sexual assault and attempted rape of Diallo in his
suite at the Sofitel hotel in Manhattan.
The French economist walked free two months ago when a
criminal court judge dismissed the charges against him after
prosecutors said they could not pursue the case because of
Diallo`s repeated lying during the investigation.
DNA evidence indicated that a sexual encounter did occur
between the two, but Strauss-Kahn`s defense team insist it was