Dominique Strauss-Kahn

They called him The Great Seducer, a Womanizer and joked about his dalliances. He's been responsible for the economic fate of nations, a contender in the next French presidential race, a man of wealth , power and of wealthy, powerful friends. Today Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the IMF sits in a New York detention centre facing multiple charges related to allegations of sexual assault. So how does it get this far?

Part One of The Current


It's Tuesday May 17th.

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This is The Current.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn - Melissa Bounoua

We started this segment with French humourist Stephane Guillon, taking aim at IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn over his reputation as a womanizer. What makes this tape especially revealing is that it aired on a French radio program two years ago and that Dominique Strauss-Kahn was actually on his way into the building when Stephane Guillon was speaking.

It seems Dominique Strauss-Kahn's behaviour towards women has been an open secret for some time ... long before more serious criminal allegations emerged this week. Mr. Strauss-Kahn is in jail in New York City this morning, having been denied bail on several charges that he sexually assaulted a hotel maid.

In the wake of the charges, a French writer named Tristane Banon alleged that he tried to assault her in 2002, an experience she has alluded to publicly before. Neither of the allegations have been proven in court.

Melissa Bounoua is a freelancer who has been covering Dominique Strauss-Kahn for several years. She's based in Paris, for the British Newspaper The Guardian.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn - Panel

The charges filed against Dominique Strauss-Kahn, and the allegations about his past behaviour have led some to wonder how he managed to rise so high in such an important international institution.

For their thoughts on that, we were joined by Pamela Divinsky, the head of The Divinsky Group, a consulting company that focuses on corporate responsibility. She was in Toronto. And Joseph Daniel McCool is the CEO of The McCool Group, a consulting company that focuses on corporate succession. He was in Concord, New Hampshire.

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