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article imageLawyer tells jury women are 'especially good liars'

By Arthur Weinreb     Apr 24, 2017 in Crime
Memphis - A Tennessee lawyer is under fire after he told a jury during his client’s rape trial that women are “especially good” at lying because they are “the weaker sex.” The jury, composed mainly of women, acquitted the affluent businessman of rape.
Tennessee businessman Mark Giannini was accused of raping a woman who came to his home to see him about a job. It was alleged Giannini drugged the woman and raped her for hours in his mansion. The wealthy businessman allegedly told the woman the sex was part of her interview for a housekeeper position. The woman ended up in hospital.
The 25-year-old woman told police she went to Giannini’s home in June 2014 to clean the house when the businessman drugged and raped her.
Giannini’s lawyers argued sex did occur at that time but it was consensual. The main issue during the trial was the credibility of the accuser.
Attorney Steve Farese made his closing arguments to the jury on Thursday. He told the jury of nine women and three men that people can be good liars. He then said, “Women can be especially good at it [lying] because they’re the weaker sex and we, that’s what the book says, and we want to protect them and not have anyone take advantage of them. At least I do.”
Farese also told the jury the prosecutor did not show the jury what the woman was wearing because it was a sexy halter top. The lawyer also argued the alleged victim lied because she did not want to be caught violating a court order prohibiting her from excessive drinking and she knew she was going to Giannini’s home to have sex.
The day after closing arguments were made, the jury came back with a verdict of not guilty. After the verdict was read, the woman broke down and had to be helped from the courtroom.
Outrage broke out over Farese’s comments on social media and elsewhere. Deborah Chubb, executive director of the Memphis Area Women's Council, called Farese’s remarks about women “absolutely despicable.” And Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich said she was disappointed in the outcome and hopes it does not prevent other women from coming forward.
Farese was unrepentant over what he said during his closing argument. He told The Commercial Appeal, “My job is not to care if anybody gets offended. Smart people will see it for what it is.”
Giannini is facing further trials for the alleged rape of two other women dating back to 2002. Farese will be representing him on those matters.
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