The former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn and his wife Anne Sinclair announced yesterday that they would sue French newspapers which have suggested that they are about to divorce.
Several French newspapers have reported that Ms Sinclair, 63, heiress to an art fortune and a celebrity television journalist, has lost patience with her husband, after supporting him throughout the Nafissatou Diallo and Tristane Banon attempted rape allegations, which both collapsed.
The reports, quoting unnamed family friends, suggest she is angry about new reports DSK was involved in sex parties with prostitutes flown from France while he was IMF chief in Washington.
Other articles have suggested that Mr Strauss-Kahn, 62, is close to a nervous breakdown and has admitted to friends that he needs medical treatment for his compulsive sexual behaviour.
The couple's lawyers issued a statement condemning the "detestable voyeurism" of "articles which pretend to know the alleged state of mind of Anne Sinclair and Dominique Strauss-Kahn". The statement said the couple intend to sue to "halt" these attacks on their "private life".
In the past fortnight, French newspapers have published leaks from an investigation into an alleged prostitution ring in Lille in northern France. Those arrested included, Fabrice Paszkowski, a businessman and politician linked to Mr Strauss-Kahn.
According to several reports, investigators found text messages sent by DSK between 2009-10 on Mr Paszkowski's mobile. They contain references to "girl-friends", "wife-swapping clubs" and "private soirées".
Mr Paszkowski and others, including a senior police officer in northern France, have been formally accused of organising sex parties involving young prostitutes, including during two visits to the IMF chief in Washington.
Mr Strauss-Kahn has twice asked to speak to police investigating the affair after what he has described as "a media lynching". He is expected to be questioned in the next few days.