CRIME

Dominique Strauss-Kahn stays at high-priced apartment during detention

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NEW YORK (AP) — With armed guards and cameras watching his every move, former IMF leader Dominique Strauss-Kahn remained holed up Sunday in a pricey high-rise while he awaits a more permanent location for house arrest in his sexual assault case.

The onetime French presidential contender has been living in the lower Manhattan skyscraper since his release Friday from Rikers Island on $1 million bail. He's been accused of trying to rape a housekeeper in his $3,000-a-night hotel suite last weekend but has denied the allegations. He's scheduled for arraignment on June 6.

The 62-year-old Strauss-Kahn was initially set for a tony apartment complex on the Upper East Side, but tenants in the building complained about the throng of police and media gathered outside. So instead, Strauss-Kahn was ensconced in the 21-story Empire Building within the New York Police Department's ring of steel, a network of private and police cameras.

It's not clear when and where he'd be moved to a more permanent house arrest; calls to his attorney and to the security firm weren't returned.

Even with the severe restrictions, Strauss-Kahn's family wealth has afforded him one of the cushiest bail agreements possible. But it won't come cheap. The cost to secure the former International Monetary Fund chief was estimated at $200,000 a month — and he must foot the bill. In comparison, it costs the city about $6,500 a month to house an inmate at a facility like Rikers Island, where he had been held nearly a week.

The funds will go toward armed surveillance, the installation of cameras and a special bracelet shackled to his ankle that will set off an alarm if he travels too far.

Right now, he's not allowed out at all, but after he's moved to a more permanent location he can leave for court, doctor visits and weekly religious services. Prosecutors must be notified at least six hours before he goes anywhere. He can't be out between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

But he won't be lonely: Strauss-Kahn can have visitors — up to four at a time in addition to family.

Meanwhile, the IMF has been working to find a successor to lead an organization that provides billions in loans to stabilize the world economy. France's finance minister, Christine Lagarde, has emerged as a front-runner to replace Strauss-Kahn. The executive board said it plans to make its selection by the end of June.

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