The ruling came shortly after the judge rejected a plea by Strauss-Kahn’s accuser, hotel maid Naifissatou Diallo, to have the Manhattan district attorney’s office replaced by a special prosecutor.
The court judge Michael Obus granted a motion from prosecutors to dismiss all charges against the international power broker known simply as DSK, ending a highly publicized prosecution without answering the question of what really happened between Strauss-Kahn and the maid assigned to clean his hotel suite.
“I see no basis to deny that application” to dismiss the charges, Obus said. The judge stayed the order pending any appellate issues.
Defense attorneys said Strauss-Kahn would not return today to France but to his townhouse in New York.
As the decision was announced, Strauss-Kahn, seated with his lawyers Benjamin Brafman and William Taylor, may have been able to faintly hear the shouts of protesters through the open court windows. The ex-IMF chief walked out of court without answering questions from reporters.
Earlier on Tuesday, the judge presiding over Strauss-Kahn’s case in New York dismissed a request by the accuser’s lawyers to appoint a special prosecutor for the case. Judge Obus said, “After considering the allegations in the complainant’s application … the court concludes that nothing called to its attention establishes disqualification or warrants removal of the elected district attorney of this county.” Ms Diallo’s attorneys said they were “seeking an emergency appeal,” against the decision.
Prosecutors initially hailed Ms Diallo as a truthful witness, and her testimony was vital in persuading a grand jury to indict Mr Strauss-Kahn on seven charges, including two counts of sexual assault. However, the case began to unravel over concerns about the complainant’s credibility.
In July, reports emerged that Ms Diallo had offered multiple versions of what had happened in the period immediately after the attack, which prosecutors said “impairs her reliability as a witness”.