PARIS Dominique Strauss-Kahn and his wife are to take legal action to protect their privacy following press claims they were seeking a divorce after the former IMF chief was linked to a prostitution scandal, lawyers for the couple said Monday.
The lawyers said they had been instructed by their clients to take all necessary legal action to put a stop to media reports which they described as "fantasizing."
"We are already examining what action to take over certain articles which indulge in the lowest form of voyeurism and provide no legitimate information to the public," lawyers Henri Leclerc and Frederique Beaulieu said in a statement.
Media reports in recent days cited anonymous sources close to the couple as saying Strauss-Kahn's wife, former television presenter Anne Sinclair, had run out of patience with him after his name surfaced in an investigation into a prostitution ring in the northern city of Lille, dubbed the Carlton Affair.
Strauss-Kahn, once the runaway favourite to win next year's presidential election, has asked to be questioned by police as soon as possible in the case. His lawyers have warned he is being lynched by the media while the case is delayed.
The Carlton Affair began with the discovery earlier this year of a network that supplied prostitutes to clients of the luxury Cartlon hotel in Lille.
Strauss-Kahn's name was linked to the affair at the start of October, only weeks after U.S. charges of attempted rape against him were dropped in New York and a sexual assault claim by a French writer was also dismissed.
French daily Le Figaro reported Friday that Sinclair had finally decided to end her marriage following the latest allegations, and had asked her husband to refund the money she had spent on his defence in New York.
Meanwhile, Sunday paper Le Journal du Dimanche said Strauss-Kahn had suffered a breakdown and had told friends he was seeking professional help.
(Reporting By Vicky Buffery)