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Diplomats’ Chauffeur Held on Rape Charge

January 18, 1985

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. (AP) _ A man temporarily employed by Ivory Coast’s mission to the United Nations was ordered held Friday, pending a hearing on a rape charge that was lodged despite his claim to diplomatic immunity.

Moussa Labo, 50, a native of the African nation of Niger, appeared before Mount Vernon City Judge Philip Scarpino, who ordered Labo held in lieu of $100,000 bond or $50,000 cash bail, pending a felony hearing Jan. 24. The felony hearing will determine whether the case will go to a grand jury.

Labo was charged after a woman allegedly was raped at an apartment on the grounds of the home of the ambassador to Sierra Leone.

Labo, who was hired as a temporary chauffer by Ivory Coast’s mission, at first told police he was protected by diplomatic immunity, but the State Department determined he was not, and he was arrested early Monday.

Authorities said Labo, who lived in New York city, went to a Jan. 11 party in New Rochelle at the home of the victim and her boyfriend.

Labo told the victim, 35, that they could get whiskey at his cousin’s house, and then drove her to an apartment in Mount Vernon, police said.

The apartment was rented by Francois Dia, who police said was the chauffeur to Sierra Leone’s ambassador. Dia allegedly had given Labo the key.

At the apartment, Labo allegedly raped the woman and then left. She walked back to New Rochelle, police said.

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