DSK Charged with Aggravated Pimping. What Is Aggravated Pimping?

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KENZO TRIBOUILLARD / AFP / Getty Images

Former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn leaves the Paris courts after a hearing regarding his seizure request of the new book "Belle et Bete" (Beauty and Beast) by author Marcela Iacub detailing their seven-month affair, on Feb. 26, 2013.

Scandal-plagued Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former head of the International Monetary Fund who was once seen as a frontrunner to become president of France, was charged on Friday for “aggravated pimping as part of a group.”

The charge caps the media-dubbed “Carlton Affair” that has dragged on since last year, when authorities announced they were investigating Strauss-Kahn for participating in a prostitution ring at luxury hotels he frequented in the northern French city of Lille. “No offence has been found to exist. So there can be no conviction in this affair,” Frederique Baulieu, one of Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers, told France’s BFM TV. “We should be focused on the law, not morality.”

Strauss-Kahn, who quit his post at the IMF in 2011 after a New York City hotel maid accused him of rape in charges that were later dropped, has acknowledged attending sex parties in Lille but says he was unaware that the women who participated were prostitutes. In February 2012, when Strauss-Kahn was arrested and questioned for his role in the prostitution ring, his then lawyer Henri Leclerk offered an unorthodox defense. “He could easily not have known, because as you can imagine, at these kinds of parties you’re not always dressed,” Leclerk said. “I challenge you to distinguish a naked prostitute from any other naked woman.”

The allegations were investigated by a panel of judges who recommended today that Strauss-Kahn be charged and tried for aggravated pimping. So what is aggravated pimping?

In France, prostitution is legal, but earning money from another person prostituting him or herself—“pimping”—is not. That charge is punishable by seven years in prison and 150,000 Euro fine.

What about the “aggravated” part of it? “Aggravated pimping” describes pimping with aggravating circumstances. Under the French penal code, those include prostituting a minor, involving a weapon, and—potential factors in Strauss-Kahn’s charge—using more than one prostitute and working with a group. “Aggravated pimping” is punishable by ten years in prison and 1.5 million Euro fine. Strauss-Kahn was originally under investigation for “aggravated pimping as part of an organized gang,” which can draw 20 years in prison, but the charges announced Friday are less severe.

Similar laws exist across the United States, crime law blogger Stephanie Rabiner reported last year. In Texas, aggravated promotion of prostitution, a felony of the third degree, involves pimping with two or more prostitutes and is punishable with up to 10 years in prison. In Maine, the charge includes forcing someone into prostitution and can carry the same sentence.

Unlike almost everywhere in America, however, prostitution itself is legal in France.

“The defense’s line is simple: there is no fact that deserves legal prosecution,” Me Malka, a lawyer for Strauss-Kahn, told the French newspaper L’Express. “Or else, you must criminalize all the clients of prostitutes.”

6 comments
mrbomb13
mrbomb13 like.author.displayName 1 Like

So, DSK engaged the services of a prostitute, but has not been convicted of financially profiting off that (or any other) prostitute.

Good luck to the prosecution on proving THAT charge (I mean that both seriously and sarcastically).

Bluhorizon
Bluhorizon like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Perhaps someone could explain how what this guy does in his private life affects his ability to do his job at World Bank or a PM of France?   Should Kennedy have been impeached for doing Marilyn?  And how did Monica damage the Clinton presidency?  Many think the Clinton years was the top of the mountain.  

Does this mean that if a man pays for women for sex he is incapable or too immoral to do his job?  And what about the guys who have a little fling, or have a mistress or multiple lovers.  Are they also to be dismissed?  If it's a "little" fling maybe they should just get demoted. What about the gay guys and the lesbians?  Should they be fired too?  Who decides these things, the National Enquirer?

notLostInSpace
notLostInSpace

This guy and Weiner must get together.  How much fun they could have.

Bluhorizon
Bluhorizon like.author.displayName 1 Like

@notLostInSpace Who cares what they do?  Just the armchair busybodies and lip flappers who think they have the corner on morality.  We throw wars that kill hundreds of thousands and that's Ok but paying a woman for sex--oh, how awful!   I guess I lost my glasses--where is the crime?

RichBrunelle
RichBrunelle like.author.displayName 1 Like

@Bluhorizon @notLostInSpace 

Blu I agree with you. Why the heck  are we in the middle of what two consenting adults do to get their groove on. We need to get out of peoples bedrooms and take care of far more important business.