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Dominique Strauss-Kahn's lawyers not worried about civil suit

By the CNN Wire Staff
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DSK lawyers open up to Piers Morgan
  • A judge approves dismissal of sexual assault charges against Strauss-Kahn
  • DA: Prosecutors were "not persuaded ... that a crime has been committed"
  • Diallo's lawyer says she has been "crying through the night" about the decision
  • Diallo's lawyer has filed a civil suit against Strauss-Kahn

New York (CNN) -- Lawyers for former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn said they are not worried about a pending civil suit from his accuser after a New York judge dropped criminal charges against him.

"She doesn't have much, if any, chance in a civil case," William Taylor told CNN's Piers Morgan Tuesday night, the same day that a New York judge dismissed sexual assault charges against Strauss-Kahn. "The same difficulties, the same lies will come back to haunt her in a civil case."

A grand jury indicted Strauss-Kahn in May over allegations he sexually assaulted housekeeper Nafissatou Diallo in his suite at the swanky Sofitel hotel in New York.

Prosecutors requested that the charges be dropped after they began to question Diallo's credibility. They said the Guinean woman had lied on an asylum application. She said she had been gang-raped by soldiers in her native country, but later admitted it never happened, prosecutors said.

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Diallo's lawyer, Kenneth Thompson, said his client was crushed by the judge's decision.

"Devastated," Thompson told guest host Don Lemon on HLN's "Joy Behar Show." "She has told the truth about what happened in that hotel room. She can't understand why Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance would abandon her. She and her daughter have been crying through the night."

Thompson said Diallo was raped like she said in her asylum application. Thompson wondered if prosecutors pushed to drop the charges because Strauss-Kahn is rich and powerful.

"Clearly, the D.A. looked at Dominique Strauss-Kahn, his status, his power," said Thompson. "If Dominique Strauss-Kahn was a bus driver from the South Bronx or a construction worker from Harlem or a plumber... Do you think that Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance would care what was in Miss Diallo's asylum application?"

Thompson said he is glad that he filed a civil suit because he did not "trust the process."

Vance, in a news release Tuesday, said prosecutors had no choice but to move to drop the charges because they were "not persuaded -- beyond a reasonable doubt -- that a crime has been committed, based on the evidence we have."

He said Diallo's testimony "was fatally damaged, for several key reasons."

Along with the asylum application, Diallo lied about the specifics of her whereabouts after the rape incident and information on tax forms, prosecutors said.

A crowd of protesters gathered near the courtroom in New York Tuesday in support of Diallo, carrying handwritten signs reading "No impunity 4 rapists in power" and "Nafissatou we believe you."

Strauss-Kahn's lawyers had maintained his innocence throughout the process.

"I think what we said from the beginning, there was an act in that room that was consensual, not forcible and I think we're going to leave it at that," said Benjamin Brafman, an attorney for Strauss-Kahn. "Unless you yourself have been accused falsely of a serious crime that you did not commit, I think it's impossible to really understand the full measure of relief that Dominique Strauss-Kahn felt today."

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