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Police deny leaking Strauss-Kahn DNA report
NYPD deny they are source of reports suggesting Strauss-Kahn's DNA matched sample taken from alleged victim's clothes.
Last Modified: 24 May 2011 05:44

New York police have denied being the source of reports on Monday that traces of Strauss-Kahn's DNA had been found on the clothes of a chambermaid who has accused him of trying to rape her in his luxury hotel suite.

Investigators had so far given "no result and no information" about the DNA test results, the police said on Tuesday, following news reports earlier that the DNA tests had given a positive result.

A spokesman from the New York Police Department denied that the results from the genetic testing had been released.

On Monday a spokeswoman from the prosecutor's office would not comment on the report saying there would be "nothing until the trial."

Strauss-Kahn, the former head of the International Monetary Fund, faces sexual assault charges over the alleged attack on the 32-year-old maid at a New York hotel earlier this month.

He denies all charges and is currently on bail at a New York safe house.

The Wall Street Journal and France 2 television channel had reported that Strauss-Kahn's DNA matched traces of semen found on the collar of the maid's shirt, quoting sources close to the investigation.

Strauss-Kahn's lawyers have not commented on the reports.

'Rush to judgment'

Garo Ghazarian, a criminal defence lawyer based in Los Angeles, California, cautioned if a DNA match was found it did not in itself prove guilt.

Strauss-Kahn with his legal team, which has hired private investigators to help prepare his defence [EPA]

He noted that there are various explanations that could explain the presence of Strauss-Kahn's body fluids on the clothing, including a secondary transfer or a consensual sexual act.

"He [was] a guest in the room, and she is an employee of the facility. 

"DNA is bound to be present in that room belonging to both of these individuals, but to take that and assume that there [was] a non-consensual encounter – if there was an encounter, to begin with - is a rush to judgment, in my opinion, and a mistake," he told Al Jazeera.

Ghazarian also noted what he said was the exceptional speed with which the DNA results had been delivered.

"There is doubt in the [legal] defence community as to the quick turnaround of the so-called DNA evidence and the match that they've made in just a few short days," he said.

'Personal nightmare'

Strauss-Kahn, who is currently seeking a new home in New York while he awaits trial, has told his former staff how he is confronting a "personal nightmare."

He has been rejected by one luxury residence because of his newfound notoriety and must soon leave his temporary apartment.

Strauss-Kahn is currently staying at the Empire Building at 71 Broadway, where management has apologised to residents and said the new arrival would be gone by "early" this week.

Charges that he attempted to rape and sexually assault the chambermaid on May 14 forced him to resign as head of the International Monetary Fund last week.

They have also wrecked his chances of standing in next year's French presidential election, in which he was expected to be the Socialist Party's candidate.

Strauss-Kahn again denied the accusations in an email message sent to IMF staff on Sunday in which he expressed "profound sadness" at the way he left his $450,000-a-year tax-free post.

"I deny in the strongest possible terms the allegations which I now face; I am confident that the truth will come out and I will be exonerated," he wrote.

"In the meantime, I cannot accept that the Fund - and you dear colleagues - should in any way have to share my own personal nightmare. So, I had to go."

Strauss-Kahn's next court appearance is scheduled for June 6, when he is expected to enter a formal plea.

On Monday his lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said his client would plead not guilty and that he was confident  Strauss-Kahn would go free.

The defence team has hired a posse of private investigators who, according to media reports, are already sifting through the 32-year-old accuser's personal history in New York and her native Guinea in West Africa.

Prosecutors told Strauss-Kahn's bail hearing last week that they were also building a "strong" case in support of the accusations.

Source:
Al Jazeera and agencies
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