Closing arguments are wrapping up in the case of 4 women suing Joe Francis of Girls Gone Wild for appearing in videos filmed during spring break in 2002/2003. Almost 8 years later, the woman are suing for unspecified damages, claiming their appearances in the videos caused most of the distress in their life. 
No one can argue that these four women have lived trouble lives. By their own accounts, the plaintiffs, identified only by their first initials, disclosed on the stand  their drug use, depression, suicide attempts and their inability to hold down jobs. However, Francis attorneys used the women’s own depositions during closing arguments to show that even during therapy sessions, the women never mentioned that appearing in Girls Gone Wild videos had anything to do with their problems.
Francis’ attorneys, husband and wife team Gerard Verga and Rachel Seaton-Virga managed a blow to the plaintiffs case when they had partial testimony of plaintiff B stricken. She claimed she was heavily drugged during the filming; but after viewing the video, even the judge and plaintiffs own attorneys had to agree that wasn’t the case. 
During her closing, Racheal Vigra asked the jury “Where is the personal responsibility? At what point do you own it and say, ‘yeah, I had something to do with that?’ ”
It was  another huge victory for team Francis when they won the ongoing argument to have the videos entered into evidence.  Although the jury only saw one of the videos in question, it was perhaps the most damaging. 
The viewing of the video by the jury is huge win for Francis because the plaintiff’s attorney had painted a picture to the jury of coercion by Francis, drugging and child pornography. Instead the jury saw the young women, sitting in a car in heavy traffic, lifting their shirts and exposing their breasts for what lasted approx. 2 -3 seconds as their older 18-year-old sister and other girls in the car laughed. 
I have seen all the videos and each one paints  a unique picture of the plaintiffs willingly participation in the GGW videos.  Particularly Plaintiff B who prior to her 8 minute “performance” with a friend shouts “ We’re gonna be stars!!”
 I can understand why the plaintiffs attorneys have fought so hard to keep the videos out of sight of the jury, but, If I was on the jury, I would also be asking the same question. Time after time, Mr. Francis begged the judge to show the videos, even holding them up in court, showing the jury he had nothing to hide.
 Time after time during the 8 day trial, the plaintiff’s attorney threw the term “child pornography” out as often as they could. But this case is not about child pornography, it is about money. 
 During his closing arguments, Larry Selander, attorney for one of the plaintiffs said “How do you punish and deter Joe Francis?”  “I think we get his attention with a lot of money.”
At another point in his closing, Selander threw out a figure: $17 million, the amount of revenue, he alleges, was generated by “Girls Gone Wild” films.
“Either that money goes to them or Joe Francis gets to keep it,” Selander said. Selendar failed to mention his cut. Remember, each plaintiff has a  separate high-profile and very expensive attorney that has worked on this case pro bono and will be paid only if they are victorious against Francis. 
The stakes are high and Francis is fighting for justice in a part of the country that seems to have none.  Panama City has made it clear that they are no fan of Joe Francis’. But whether or not they like him is not what the jury is deciding. This verdict is worth watching. Stay tuned.



  1. Pingback: Case Of Lies
  2. Nice post! You truly have a wonderful way of writing which I find captivating! I will definitely be bookmarking you and returning to your blog. In fact, your post reminded me about a strange thing that happened to me the other day. I’ll tell you about that later…

  3. I was on girls gone wild when I was 16 and case was dismissed they said I was expressing my right and the company didn’t break any laws by filming me. It’s still in my mind how this same thing happened to me and everyone said I was a minor but the fact I was in public flashing makes it ok to do what they did hopefully some laws changed and the girls have honest lawyers who have morals.

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