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By John Helmer, Moscow

Just over three months after an incident at the Sofitel Hotel, at 45 West 44th Street, New York, resulted in the arrest of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the transformation of the French presidential election race, not to mention the management of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the New York City prosecutor, Cyrus Vance Junior, has dropped all charges. He has requested and obtained dismissal of the indictment of Strauss-Kahn, and impugned the credibility of the chamber-maid charging Strauss-Kahn on almost every claim published in the case.

The detailed submission to the Manhattan court presents for the first time the full evidence collected by the New York Police Department (NYPD) investigators in the case since May 14. Read all 25 pages in full.

It is now quite clear in retrospect that claims issued by the NYPD commissioner to the press that Strauss-Kahn had committed an act of anal sex was false from the start – indeed, it was never complained of. Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Browne lied to or misled the press on that score. And when asked on May 15 to corroborate what the press had reported him as saying, he covered up.

The new evidence secured by the NYPD goes some way to establishing that in New York City evidence-gathering is still more professional than political appointees speaking for the police department or the District Attorney’s (DA) office have proved themselves to be over the past three months.

And that’s where the big surprise emerges of guilt in this case – Sofitel is running a bordello in which, in which at least four unknown individuals have been caught by the police spraying their sexual liquids on the wallpaper and carpet of the one suite investigated, number 2806 – and that’s just from the hall of the suite, before the cops got to work inside the bedroom. Several hundred more rooms and a kilometre of Sofitel carpet have yet to be investigated.

Just down the street from the boyishly sweaty exertions of the Harvard Club and the Yacht Club, the Sofitel establishment is, according to the management website: “this brilliant, 30-story midtown Manhattan hotel evokes a contemporary statement in limestone and glass, just a stone’s throw from Fifth Avenue. Enjoy the modern amenities at this fine midtown New York hotel, set within easy reach of Manhattan’s most celebrated attractions.” About the attractions inside Sofitel’s accommodations, this “special feature” may be the giveaway: “relax with a cocktail and enjoy the intimate atmosphere of Gaby’s bar.”

According to the court testimony of the NYPD and the District Attorney’s office, the investigators identified “five distinct areas” inside Room 2806 which “potentially contained biological fluids”. They then lifted and removed the carpet from the inner hallway of the room, and a patch of wallpaper from the hall wall. Five carpet stains tested positive for “biological fluid”, and one wallpaper stain. That makes six stains. However, only one, on the carpet at an estimated six to eight feet from the spot of the alleged crime, tested positive for sexual fluids with DNA identifying the accuser and the accused.

That leaves four floor stains and one wall stain testing positive for sex, apparently.

The count is four other males, three other females spilling their seed in Sofitel room 2806, far above the intimacies of Gaby’s Bar, and recently enough to be preserved from the cleaning methods of the professional cleaning staff.

According to DA Vance, the NYPD failed to find any evidence of semen or other DNA from Strauss-Kahn on the maid’s body, mouth and fingernails included. The only place DSK left his mark, according to this evidence, was in three stains on “the upper portion of the maid’s uniform”, not on her apron below the belt. If she had been injured in the encounter, as the New York press had claimed initially, egged on by prosecutors and police, there was no evidence of her blood anywhere. More significantly, the medical evidence obtained from the maid at a New York hospital after she was taken there by the police, provided no evidence of injury at all. The press leaks on that point were inventions.

The evidence the police had immediately found after the alleged attack indicated that the maid was wearing two pairs of pantyhose, one on top of the other, and underneath, a pair of panties. As for the alleged grabbing and tearing of these garments, this is what the NYPD was telling DA Vance before he sent Strauss-Kahn to prison:

But there was blood – on the bed, and on Strauss-Kahn’s underwear. It is now confirmed that this was from a preexisting condition from which Strauss-Kahn was suffering. The police saw that immediately after they had arrested him. Only now does DA Vance conclude that “these stains appear to be unrelated to the incident under investigation.”

On May 15, when Sofitel managers were asked for clarification of anomalies and contradictions in the press leaks supplied by the police and the prosecutors, the hotel sent this email response: “The safety and security of our team members and guests is out [sic] utmost priority. We are taking this matter very seriously and the Sofitel team is fully cooperating with authorities in their investigation. Please direct all further inquiries regarding this matter to the New York Police Department’s Midtown South Detective Squad.”

The evidence of seminal shenanigans found in Room 2806 suggests that Sofitel’s priority is anything but the claims it allowed to be advanced, when doing so made Strauss-Kahn look guilty.

One last piece of evidence about DSK from the small print now disclosed by DA Vance. The chamber-maid opened DSK’s hotel-room door at 12:06. At that point, according to her evidence, he was stark naked, possibly wet, and running at her from the bathroom. A footnote on page 9 of the prosecution’s submission to the court now reveals:

Also, after DSK was locked away on Riker’s Island, the NYPD checked what he had told them about his telephone-call to his daughter and his lunch with her after he checked out of the hotel. The telephone-call to Camille Strauss-Kahn occurred at 12:13. So the prosecution is now obliged to concede that “whatever had occurred between the complainant and the defendant was over in approximately seven to nine minutes.”

What the time records mean is not only, as the DA claims that “the encounter between the complainant and the defendant was brief”, but that Strauss-Kahn managed to ejaculate in more than one place at a time, then dress himself, tie his shoelaces, make a telephone-call, pack his bag, schlep it to the elevator and down 27 floors to the hotel lobby, put down his credit card, and complete check-out formalities – all in just 22 minutes. As Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said, alone among European heads of government in May: “I just can’t believe that – it is beyond me to understand it.”

Could the evidence of the sexual encounter have been deposited – on the carpet and the upper part of the maid’s uniform – hours or even days before? Did the two of them have more than one sexual encounter in Room 2806, much earlier and more drawn out as these things can be sometimes, with the promise of more, or more solid rewards, when the maid says she returned at 1206 on the Saturday afternoon? Did sex happen at one time, a demand for cash at another? The court filing for dismissal, produced by Vance and his subordinates, makes no reference to anything Strauss-Kahn said in his own defence from the time of his arrest – if he said anything at all.
 

If the NYPD and DA Vance are telling the truth this time around, DSK’s 22-minute dash may come close to the record for the fastest mood and substance change, not to mention express checkout, in recently recorded history. Quite possibly it’s just what the French people need for beating Nicolas Sarkozy for president in 2012.

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