Girls Gone Wild founderJ, Joe Francis, facing the same judge in Panama City Fl. who first sent him to jail back in 2007, is vigorously defending himself in federal court, and, to say the least, things are getting wild. Not since Larry Flynt’s outburst in Supreme Court have we seen such fireworks in a courtroom.
Francis came face to face in court with the first of the four women suing him in a civil case dating back to 2002. The women, identified only by their first initials, allege they were unwillingly filmed underage for a GGW video. But the videos, which the jury may now never see, paint a very different picture of the troubled young women on the stand.
“Plaintiff B” claims she had never heard of GGW videos prior to her appearance and testified her life spiraled out of control since she appeared in a GGW video. Teary eyed, she says she had to drop out of college, move place to place to avoid being recognized, hasn’t been able to hold down a job, and has been hospitalized repeatedly for weeks at a time. She even alleged her father died of a heart attack after he learned of her participation in a GGW video, but then addressed Francis directly by saying “I never said Girls Gone Wild killed my father”
In a heated cross examination, Francis surprised the courtroom by getting “Plaintiff B” to admit she had been paid in the past to appear on camera. Under oath, Plaintiff B -a self admited geometry scholar- couldn’t answer Francis’ basic question as to what a right triangle was.
The deck appears stacked against Francis, as the judge denied Francis’right to show the jury a damaging video of “Plaintiff B” willingly participating in a GGW video. The judge, who has battled with Francis since the onset of this case, has ordered Francis not to ask the women about their ages at the time of the incident or wether they willingly signed waivers claiming they were 18.
So how does Francis – who needs to convice a juror of 8 women – get a fair shot at justice? “I respect this judge, I have trust in this jury, and I have a particular fondess for Lady Justice”