Follieri got millions of dollars in investment money from an unspecified private equity firm based on his misrepresentations, court papers said.
According to published reports, California supermarket mogul Ron Burkle has previously sued Follieri in Delaware for misusing money from a joint real estate venture involving buying and reselling properties owned by the Catholic Church.
No flight risk Edwards told the judge her client was no threat to flee just because he had access to millions of dollars and his family is in Italy.
She noted that his mother was being treated at a hospital in Manhattan.
“This is a young man who has no criminal history,” she said.
Bail was set at million for Raffaello Follieri, 29.
Federal prosecutors said they have "overwhelming" evidence that he improperly spent up to million from investors, much of it on a lavish lifestyle, including privately chartered jet travel with his girlfriend and others, expensive meals and clothing and a posh Manhattan apartment.
Follieri often interrupted his lawyer during the hearing, speaking loudly and mugging for the audience, while claiming to have paid off some of the debts prosecutors said he owed.
“He obtained millions of dollars from investors and then he used that money to live the lifestyle of a multimillionaire,” Brodsky said.