Incriminating New Dominique Strauss Kahn Footage Airs on French Cable News

2:32 PM PST 12/08/2011 by Rebecca Leffler
Francois Guillot/AFP/Getty Images

The previously unseen security tapes of the embattled politician, debuting on the nation's BFM network, show him leaving the hotel where he was accused of sexual assault.

Dominique Strauss Kahn was back in the spotlight on Thursday after a French TV network aired new footage of the politician checking out of the now infamous Sofitel hotel in New York where he was accused of sexual assault.

French cable news network BFM aired the footage that shows Strauss-Kahn leaving an elevator, paying his hotel bill then stepping into a taxi. The network claims the tapes were filmed around 20 minutes after the alleged rape of hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo.

Strauss-Kahn appears calm throughout the video, though recent news reports have suggested that Strauss-Kahn may have been the target of a political plot.

BFM also aired footage of Diallo in the hotel hallway apparently making gestures that insinuate she had been attacked such as grabbing her own breast and stretching out her arms to nearby security workers.

The clips don’t show Strauss-Kahn or Diallo leaving the Sofitel suite where the alleged attack occurred, since there are no surveillance cameras on that particular floor. They do, however, show two Sofitel employees hugging each other in what journalist Edward Epstein had described as a three-minute victory dance.

The hotel claims the celebration lasted only seconds and may have been a reaction to a sporting event unrelated to the incident. Sofitel’s parent company, the Accor group, released a statement on Thursday denying any involvement of the hotel in a conspiracy.

Strauss-Kahn had been in the running to be France’s next President, but the scandal continues to dominate the media. Five minutes of the surveillance videos from May 14th are currently posted on BFM TV’s website.

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