Judge sets Mark Giannini's bond at $3 million

Published: Feb. 13, 2015 at 4:16 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 14, 2015 at 2:52 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A Shelby County judge set Mark Giannini's bond at $3 million; the information technology mogul must also surrender his passport. The Eads, Tennessee businessman is accused of three rapes involving three different women he employed. The rapes are reported to have happened in 2002, 2013, and 2014.

When investigators executed a search warrant of his home, they found assorted sex toys, nipple clamps, leashes, lingerie, 20 toothbrushes and more.

Giannini's bond hearing was delayed until Friday because the judge wants to hear recordings of his jailhouse phone conversations.

Giannini's attorneys, Steve Farese and Leslie Ballin, say their client is having trouble in jail because he doesn't fit in with the jail population. They say he is innocent and is not a flight risk.

"This man is innocent until proven guilty," Farese said as he worked to paint a new picture of two of the three women Giannini is accused of raping.

Farese said one of the women is a porn star and another dabbles in prostitution and drugs. The attorney also suggested one of the alleged victims tried to cash in on the case by filing a multi-million dollar lawsuit before this criminal case.

The state argued Giannini has searched online how to get a duplicate passport and that he has the means to flee with a net worth of about $8 million rather than the $3 million he claims to have.

"The defendant has no intention of coming back to court," the prosecution said in the bond hearing on Friday.

Farese argued the Google search happened before the case.

The state told the judge that Giannini lived a double live and pointed out that investigators found a passport, cash, and an expired DeSoto County sheriff's badge with Giannini's name on it.

The court also learned a few details about the jailhouse conversations that delayed the hearing earlier this week.

"The next thing we'll see is some jailhouse snitch coming in and saying, 'Oh yeah, Yeah. He confessed,'" Farese said.

He asked the judge for a $1 bond, while the prosecution asked for $5 million.

The judge settled on a $3 million bond and Giannini is required to forfeit his passport.

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