Opening arguments begin in Mark Giannini trial

Opening arguments begin in Mark Giannini trial

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Opening arguments began Tuesday in the trial of Mark Giannini, a prominent businessman accused of rape. Giannini is accused of sexually assaulting a woman he met for the first time back in 2014.

Tuesday, both of the fence and prosecution warned the testimony would be graphic.

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Defense attorneys portrayed Mark Giannini as a man who lived the plush life for money earned but they admitted he was single and he loved women.

Defense attorney William Massey told the jury Giannini met his alleged victim through an associate.

"The relationship with him will involve sex. Don't go into this with your eyes blind. Go into it with your eyes open," said Attorney Massey during opening arguments.

Not just sex with the promise of money the defense argued.  The allege victim met Giannini at his home.

Defense attorney Massey told the jury Giannini and the young woman had sex twice that afternoon but she disappeared often to drink and got drunk.

She would later pass out and have to be rushed to the hospital.

"A single mother of four. She needed more money," said Massey.

"She was far from perfect. She had been in trouble with the law before," said Carrie Bush, prosecutor for Shelby County.

Prosecutors told the jury Giannini attacked the woman, brutally raped and sodomized her.