Former Mississauga restaurateur charged with sex assault for second time

A former Mississauga restaurateur awaiting a new sexual assault trial is facing fresh allegations of misconduct.

Niagara Regional Police have charged Rocco Giovannelli with sexual assault.

Police allege a female patron of an unnamed St. Catharines restaurant was approached by a member of management and sexually assaulted at her table on the evening of September 14.

Giovannelli opened Cefalù, an Italian eatery in the city's Port Dalhousie area at the end of June.

Police say they have reason to believe there may be other alleged victims but have not elaborated on why.

Giovannelli has previously been invested in Misssissauga eateries Fired Up! and Goodfellas. In February 2017 the restaurateur was convicted of the sexual assault of an employee at a 2015 staff party. But the Mississauga News reports Giovannelli's conviction was thrown out in August and a new trial ordered.

NEWSTALK 1010 reached out Friday to lawyer Carolyne Kerr who represented Giovannelli in pursuing his appeal. Kerr refused to say whether or not she was representing Giovannelli in the St Catharines case, repeatedly saying "no comment" before hanging up.

Peel Regional Police say there has been no communication with their counterparts in Niagara about Giovannelli.