Bloomberg News

Strauss-Kahn Accuser Hires French Lawyer to Find Victims

June 23, 2011

June 23 (Bloomberg) -- The woman who accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn of attempted rape and sexual assault in New York hired a Paris lawyer to look for women in France who may have been victimized by the former International Monetary Fund chief.

Kenneth P. Thompson, a former federal prosecutor who is representing the accuser in New York, hired Thibault de Montbrial to provide legal support, the French lawyer said today.

“I am working with him, I am the contact for his firm in France, notably to see if there exist other victims of Mr. Strauss-Kahn,” de Montbrial said in a telephone interview.

Strauss-Kahn, 62, was arrested May 14 and later indicted on seven counts, including criminal sex act, attempted rape, sexual abuse, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching. If convicted of the top charges, he faces as long as 25 years in prison. He has pleaded not guilty.

He allegedly attacked a housekeeper, a 32-year-old from Guinea, at the Midtown Manhattan Sofitel on May 14, grabbing her breasts and trying to pull down her pantyhose, prosecutors said in court papers. The former IMF chief attempted to rape her and forced her to perform oral sex, according to the indictment.

De Montbrial represented former Renault SA employee Matthieu Tenenbaum in his wrongful-firing case over false claims he sold information on the automaker’s electric-car program. De Montbrial declined to say when he was hired or comment on how information he uncovers would be used.

Emily Browne, a spokeswoman for Thompson, had no immediate comment. Benjamin Brafman, a lawyer for Strauss-Kahn, declined to comment.

--With assistance from Karen Freifeld in New York. Editor: Christopher Scinta, Stephen Farr

To contact the reporter on this story: Heather Smith in Paris at hsmith26@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net.


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