Ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn (DSK) - who denies charges of pimping - has told a court in northern France that prosecutors had greatly exaggerated the frequency of his "licentious evenings." In fact, as The BBC reports, DSK explained (with a straight face) that he took part in only a few rare sex parties - "only 12 parties the last 3 years."
As he took the stand on Tuesday, Mr Strauss-Kahn said: "I committed no crime, no offence."
"The prosecution gives the impression of unbridled activity," he told the court. But, he added: "There were only 12 parties in total - that is four per year over three years."
In 2008, Lagarde decided to allow an arbitration to end a dispute between Bernard Tapie, a businessman and supporter of then President Nicolas Sarkozy, and former state-owned bank Credit Lyonnais. Lagarde, who was put under investigation for “negligence” by the Cour de Justice de la Republique, denied any wrongdoing, saying it was the best option for the state.
“They consider at this stage that she did not willingly participate in activities to defraud the state,” said Stephane Bonifassi, a lawyer at Lebray & Associes in Paris, which is not involved in the case. “A further decision will have to be made about whether she should go to trial or not.”
Lagarde faces a rarely used minor charge of negligence in the use of public funds in the criminal case, which carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a fine of 15,000 euros ($20,000), the lawyer said in an interview. There’s no time limit for the court to decide on taking the case to trial and it may continue “for a fairly long time,” he said.
And today we discover yet another Former IMF Chief (2004-2007) Rodrigo Rato is now under investigation by Spanish authorities for money-laundering.
Rodrigo Rato, the former International Monetary Fund managing director, under investigation for possible money laundering, El Pais says, citing government officials without naming them.
Rato facing probe after taking advantage of tax amnesty to repatriate previously undeclared offshore funds, El Pais reports.
Rato’s lawyer Ignacio Ayala didn’t respond to two messages requesting comment that Bloomberg left with his assistants in Madrid.
Rato is not alone as Director of Spanish tax agency Santiago Menendez told Parliament on Feb. 17 that 705 people involved in tax amnesty were being investigated for possible money laundering.
Spokesman for Budget Ministry, which introduced amnesty, says it didn’t include protection for financial criminals; declined to say whether Rato was under investigation, citing legal restrictions.
An investigating judge is holding Rato and his predecessor, Miguel Blesa, responsible for the credit card abuse that went on at both lenders, where board members and top managers were handed “black cards” with a monthly spending limit that they could use for personal purposes. These cards were not declared to the Tax Agency, nor did the monthly allowances show up as part of the beneficiaries’ salary.
Between 2003 and 2012, 83 executives and board members racked up €15.5 million in expenses that included travel, gourmet restaurants and jewelry.
Finally, Rato is under scrutiny for the way Bankia was floated on the Spanish stock exchange, a move that investigators believe may have involved fraud and document forgery.
* * *
3 strikes and you're out of credibility. Where there is smoke (and mirrors) there is fire... or is this all just coincidence for the person who, after The Fed, is probably the most powerful in the world.