Strauss-Kahn free from house arrest; charges stand

Former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn walked out of court free without bail or home confinement after prosecutors said extensive background investigation of the hotel maid accusing him of sexual assault gave them pause.

Strauss-Kahn had been under pricey house arrest for weeks in a Manhattan loft on $6 million in cash bond. The charges, which include attempted rape, have not been reduced, but the move signals that prosecutors do not believe the accusations are as ironclad as they once seemed.

"There will be no rush to judgment,'' New York Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus said at the hearing. "The people will continue to investigate and re-examine the matter as appropriate.''

Under the release terms, Strauss-Kahn can come and go as he pleases in New York, however, he was not allowed to be in possession of his passport, according to NBC News. He would also have his $1 million bail and $5 million bond returned.

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Strauss-Kahn, 62, left the courthouse smiling and holding hands with his wife, French journalist Anne Sinclair. He wore a dark gray suit, and she a white jacket.

"It is a great relief," said one of Strauss-Kahn's lawyers, William Taylor, adding "it is so important in this country that people, especially the media, refrain from judgment until the facts are all in."