DSK Accuser’s African Connection
The sexual assault case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn is crumbling. Was there a shakedown? A conspiracy? The answers will come from New York’s West African community.
July 1, 2011 7:54 AM EDT
At the 2115 Café on Frederick Douglass Boulevard in Harlem, where the hotel chambermaid who accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn of criminal sexual assault used to spend much of her free time, there are some interesting pictures on the wall. One shows owner Ibrahim “Abe” Fofanah, 46, gripping and grinning with a police captain. Another shows him with New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.
But pride of place goes to the photograph of Fofanah and Alpha Condé, who was elected last November as president of Guinea, the country from which DSK’s accuser immigrated and requested political asylum. Condé, as it turns out, also has extensive ties to major political players in France, including people close to—wait for it—both President Nicolas Sarkozy and Strauss-Kahn, who had been expected to be the incumbent’s main challenger in next year’s elections. You can see why the conspiracy-minded French find the case so fascinating.
The May 15 arrest of DSK and his subsequent resignation from his powerful position as director of the International Monetary Fund seemed to end his presidential prospects. That was such a lucky break for the very unpopular Sarkozy that many French people found the story incredible to the point of implausibility. Some 57 percent, when polled soon after the arrest, said they thought somebody (the poll didn’t ask who) had set up DSK.