The arrest of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the International Monetary Fund, in New York threatens crucial talks with Greece over its lagging budget reforms. The talks were scheduled for Brussels on Monday and Tuesday, together with European Union finance ministers and the European Central Bank.
Strauss-Kahn was taken off an Air France jet at JFK airport in New York on Saturday afternoon only a few minutes before it was to take off for Paris. The 62-year old Frenchman found himself in a Midtown Manhattan police holding cell on Sunday after being arrested on charges of a criminal sexual act, attempted rape and unlawful imprisonment.
His lawyer reportedly told the Reuters news agency that he is pleading not guilty.
Strauss-Kahn is a former French finance minister and is a leader of the French socialist party. He was seen as a candidate in the next French presidential elections.