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Hotel employee in IMF chief’s room before maid – sources

PARIS, May 19, 2011 (AFP) – A hotel employee was in IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s room before the maid who accuses him of sexual assault entered, but left before the alleged assault, police and hotel sources said Wednesday.

When the maid showed up at Strauss-Kahn’s suite at the Sofitel hotel in New York on Saturday, “the door was half-open,” a French police source said.

The maid “pushed the door, an employee was removing breakfast from the suite and he told her she could clean the room,” said a source close to the hotel group.

The maid then “returned to the room with her cart and the other employee left,” the hotel source said.

The source also said that the hotel was equipped with cameras “only in the lobby and on the first and second floors, where the meeting rooms are,” adding that there were “no cameras in the hallways, the rooms or the suites.”

U.S. investigators have said the maid entered the room believing it was empty while Strauss-Kahn was in the shower at the other end of the suite.

Strauss-Kahn was arrested Saturday and formally charged in New York on Monday with seven counts involving sexual assault and attempted rape of a maid in the luxury Times Square Sofitel hotel.

A judge denied him bail and he was remanded to the sprawling Rikers Island prison.

Strauss-Kahn’s lawyer says he denies all the charges.

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