Dominique Strauss-Kahn confronted by rape accuser Banon

  • 29 September 2011
  • From the section Europe
Media captionThe BBC's Christian Fraser: "Tristane Banon said she wanted to look into the eyes of Dominique Strauss-Kahn"

Ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn and the French writer who accuses him of attempted rape have confronted each other as part of a police inquiry.

Police are investigating Tristane Banon's complaint before prosecutors decide whether to press charges.

Mr Strauss-Kahn is said to admit making "an advance" on Ms Banon, but denies any violence, and is suing for slander.

She made the allegations in June, when Mr Strauss-Kahn was accused of rape in New York; that case was later dropped.

The confrontation took place at a Paris police station without lawyers present, but with police officers in the room. Police confrontations are held when two people in a case give different versions of events.

'Kicks and punches'

Mr Strauss-Kahn, 62, left the police station a couple of hours after arriving without making any comments.

Later, his lawyer said both sides had stuck to their version of what happened

Ms Banon, 32, had said she was keen to confront her alleged attacker: "I want him in front of me so he can look into my eyes and say to my face that I imagined it."

She alleges she had to fight off Mr Strauss-Kahn "with kicks and punches" when he tried to rip off her clothes during an interview at Paris flat in 2003.

Ms Banon first made the allegations in a TV chat show in 2007, when Mr Strauss-Kahn's name was bleeped out.

On the basis of preliminary inquiries, including Thursday's confrontation, police are expected to hand over their conclusions to prosecutors in the coming days.

The prosecutors may then decide to either drop the case or start formal criminal proceedings by requesting the appointment of an investigating judge.

There is no time limit for prosecutors to make the decision.

The former International Monetary Fund director, who was once tipped as a future French president, recently returned to France.

He also still faces a civil suit in the US by his alleged victim in New York, Nafissatou Diallo.

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