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Maid's Lawsuit Against Internationally Renowned Perv Dominique Strauss-Kahn Will Proceed

Illustration for article titled Maids Lawsuit Against Internationally Renowned Perv Dominique Strauss-Kahn Will Proceed

Even though rape charges against former International Monetary Fund chief and real life Pepe Le Pew Dominique Strauss-Kahn were dropped after prosecutors decided that a woman who has lied once has lied about everything ever, yesterday a judge in the Bronx ruled that Nafissatou Diallo's lawsuit against her accused attempted rapist can proceed.

The now-notorious DSK incident happened about a year ago in a $RIDICULOUS suite in a Manhattan hotel, where Diallo claims Strauss-Kahn attacked and tried to rape her. But after prosecutors uncovered inconsistencies in Diallo's testimony, charges were dropped and DSK was free to sail back to France on the thin film of mollusk-like mucus that carries him everywhere. Shortly after the New York City incident, a French writer alleged that Strauss-Kahn had similarly tried to assault her back in 2003. Though that case was deemed too old to try, charges relating to Strauss-Kahn's alleged involvement in a prostitution ring are currently working their way through the peristalsis of the French legal system.

Strauss-Kahn's lawyers claimed that his role with the IMF afforded him the same sort of immunity from prosecution or lawsuit in the Diallo case usually afforded to diplomats. Diallo's lawyers pointed out that Strauss-Kahn was on personal business in New York when the alleged incident occurred, and Bronx state Supreme Court Justice Douglas McKeon sided with Diallo. No word on what happens next or when, but whatever is to come probably involves Dominique Strauss-Kahn making creepy faces.

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[AP]

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DISCUSSION

Brief list of reasons why this is probably going to go well for Diallo:

-The case has already been tried in the media, and regardless of the fact Diallon allegedly lied repeatedly about prior sexual assaults for the purposes of seeking asylum in the US (this happens pretty often from what my immigration law friends tell me, so it's not like she's the only damn one), DSK's publicity has been awful and all sexual misconduct related.

-Despite the fact that the prior sexual assault case can no longer be brought (I assume for statute of limitations reasons), that doesn't mean that it cannot be used as evidence against him—although I'm not sure if it'll pass evidentiary muster given the fact that you'd be trying to introduce the prior incident for the purposes of showing action in conformity (but they can always try and in so doing prejudice the judge against DSK).

-The burden of proof is lower in a civil case than in a criminal case; and you also don't necessarily need a unanimous verdict. Criminal trials, as a matter of Constitutional law, use the "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard with which everyone in the US is likely familiar. Civil trials use a "preponderance of the evidence" standard, which basically means "more likely than not". Further, I don't know what the rule in NY is (different jurisdictions have different rules for juries), but many places do not require unanimous verdicts for civil trials.

-This isn't the state prosecuting—it'll be a Plaintiff's attorney with their eyes on the damn prize. A huge prize. Given the fact that DSK acted maliciously and intentionally (i.e., it's hard to argue that someone tried to commit rape through mere recklessness) this almost certainly qualifies Diallo to seek UNCAPPED punitive damages, which means financial worth discovery—in other words, they'll look at DSK's finances and net worth and determine how much money they'll have to extract to give him a black eye to deter him from being a rapey asshole. And giving a multi-millionaire a monetary black eye is a REAL lucrative business—I'm here to tell you this attorney is going to fight like a fucking junkyard dog to take DSK down; the potential payoff is too great not to.

So what's actually gonna happen? Well, they're probably gonna settle. They'll either settle before even going to trial (if they're smart), or they'll go to trial, do really poorly, and THEN settle for some obscene amount of money (though less than a good judgment would likely amount to), inclusive of fees and costs (lawyers gotta get paid, yo), and execute general releases stipulating that Diallo can't write a book or tell people about what a rapey guy DSK is—but who gives a shit at that point? She's rich (don't need no publishin' career), and the world already knows this guy's an evil shitbird.