NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The high-ranking French businessman accused of trying to rape a hotel housekeeper pleaded not guilty in court Monday.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, former head of the International Monetary Fund and once a leading candidate for the French presidency, had previously declared his innocence and had been expected to fight the charges.

The 62-year-old departed his rented, $14 million luxury townhouse in TriBeCa early Monday. He was greeted by a crush of media, who had been waiting to catch a glimpse of the high-profile suspect. He quickly stepped into a dark vehicle and sped away.

Over 100 hotel workers bused in by their union were among those who greeted Strauss-Kahn when he arrived at the courthouse. They chanted “shame on you.”

WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell At The Courthouse

“We, as women, should be respected – it doesn’t matter what job you do,” Rosalyn Edgar, who works at Essex House Hotel, told CBS 2’s Tony Aiello.

“I feel really, really sad, and on top of that I feel really insecure,” Ramada Inn & Plaza employee Aissata Bocum said.

Joining Strauss-Kahn at his court appearance were his wife Anne Sinclair and his defense team. Strauss-Kahn wore a dark suit and blue tie.

State Supreme Court Justice Michael Orbus read through various formalities and notified Strauss-Kahn his next court date was July 18.

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Strauss-Kahn’s lawyer spoke briefly after the financier’s court appearance.

“Once the evidence is reviewed, it will be clear that there was no element of forcible compulsion in this case whatsoever,” attorney Benjamin Brafman said. “Any suggestion to the contrary is simply not credible.”

The housekeeper has lawyers, too, and they told reporters the defense is trying to smear her good name.

“The victim wants you to know that all of Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s power and money and influence throughout the world will not keep the truth about what he did to her in that hotel room from coming out,” attorney Kenneth Thompson said.

Strauss-Kahn’s new neighbors are familiar with celebrities in their neighborhood, and seem to be taking the media presence in stride.

“You’re used to all this commotion going around, so this is no different,” one resident said.

On the streets of TriBeCa, many were saying they’re glad the legal system in this case appears to be working.

“The fact that despite whatever money and power he may have, he’s treated according to the system, I think that’s very encouraging,” said Andy Bragg, tourist from Florida.

The 32-year-old housekeeper’s lawyer said that she remains too traumatized to return to work at the Sofitel. He rejected any suggestion that she might take a payoff and stop cooperating, insisting she’ll take the witness stand if the case comes to trial.

Comments (12)
  1. Dale Auburn says:

    Why didn’t he claim DIPLOMATIC IMMUNITY?

  2. Vivian says:

    Kulola Kofye I used to have the same problem when I worked for black bosses, if a black man can’t sleep with you or doesn’t know someone that has slept with you they feel that they either don’t know you or can’t trust you around their money. That’s why their business dealings fail, for the last twenty years I have opted to work for white bosses because they pay on time and concentrate on business.

  3. Kulola Kofye says:

    God works in mysterious ways. The African sister was used to not only bring dwn Strauss Khann but also to highlight the PLIGHT of African women who are being treated as objects by foreign men in positions of power in America. This is not only about the chamber maid, its about nurses and their sick male patients. I am an African woman who has been jumping from job to job because white men and women won’t hire me. But immigrants and African American men have been hiring me and just harrass me within the three month period when they can fire one on an “at will” basis. This case as nasty as it is — hopefully will shed some light on what can happen. I mean most of them don’t go the to the extent that Strauss Khann went but still. We are the new slaves in America. BTW — I am a former employee of the World Bank. I don’t even want to associate my name to the IMF/WB — everyone starts to think that women in those insitutions are up for sale or for molesting.

  4. nyc says:

    Innocent ! Pay for sex gone bad ! Poor rich dirty old man !

  5. E says:

    he’s got no choice but to fight

  6. ignatius paul says:

    hi is ignatius paul from rivers state nigeria i want to say all is well with Dominique Strauss-Kahn, is not true just tell him to stop tressing him self about that.


  7. Lillie says:

    Hopefully for him he’s getting pleasured by his wife in that 14million dollar apt while he’s still free on bail. When it’s all said and done he’ll hopefully be in prison getting what he gave the maid..the raw deal.
    It’s absolutely a slap in the face when “they” think they can throw their money in faces, what every the amount, they are NOT above the Law.

    1. sheriff says:

      Most of the time they are. Sad but true, you can get an awful amount of innocence with the Benjamins.

  8. RJS says:

    you may discover another Anne Sinclair on the N°44 issue of the french ” LUI ” erotic journal of june 1991 (issue N° 44 ) with very interresting pictures (drawings) of the actually dsk wife…..!

  9. p says:,,, .

  10. Mars says:

    i know you are american, but please could you spell “Kahn” right !?
    His name is in the news for 1 month now !!!
    Is this CBS or… the New York Post ?

  11. readerinparis says:

    “High-ranking French businessman”? DSK is a lawyer, academic and (mostly) career politician who never ran a business in his life..

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