Giannini agrees to plea deal in 2013 rape case

Giannini agrees to plea deal in 2013 rape case

SHELBY CO., Tenn. — Businessman Mark Giannini agreed to a plea deal in a 2013 rape case.

Giannini pled guilty to assaulting a 23-year-old woman at his home in Eads.

The 53-year-old was placed on probation for four years after entering an Alford plea or best-interests plea in which a defendant maintains innocence but acknowledges the likelihood of conviction in trial. It has the same legal effect as a guilty plea, said Shelby County Dist. Atty. Gen. Amy Weirich.

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As part of the settlement, a 2002 rape case was dismissed with that victim's approval. A pending bribery case was also dismissed.

In 2017, a jury found Giannini not guilty in another rape trial.

Also in 2017, Giannini pled guilty to felony drug charges and was placed on probation for four years and fined $2,000.

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According to court documents in this latest case, Giannini was initially indicted on aggravated rape charges.

In October 2013, a 23-year-old woman told authorities Giannini hired her to be his personal assistant and work at his home.

She told investigators that on her first day, she worked from 10 a.m. to about 2 p.m., then she and Giannini had drinks and swam in his pool. When she was getting ready to leave, she said Giannini took off his bathing suit and sexually assaulted her.

Thursday, the case was settled with a charge of aggravated assault with the approval of the victim. She told authorities she did not want to go through a trial.