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Girls Gone Wild Founder Takes Case To The Web

Takes $300 million lawsuit to federal judge

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Girls Gone Wild peddler and CEO of Mantra Films, Joe Francis, has filed a $300 million lawsuit against a federal judge alleging illegal imprisonment and backroom dealings with his former law partners. In conjunction with the lawsuit, Francis is pleading his case with the public at large via Web video, urging the public to write Congress to have Judge Richard Smoak removed from the bench.

Francis is also framing the lawsuit as a First Amendment struggle, accusing Panama City authorities and opposition lawyers in the 2003 case of working "in cahoots" "to extort a ransom for Francis’ release from a Panama City jail, where he spent nearly a year. Francis says his imprisonment was the result of a Bay County Courthouse "cabal" resulting from "shady backroom deals stemming from a civil lawsuit filed by several coeds," which led to his imprisonment without bail.

"Panama City officials began their persecution of Joe Francis with open deception, continued with perjury, and concluded with illegal imprisonment," said Robert E. Barnes, attorney for Francis. "That may be what counts for justice in Panama City, but it’s not American justice."

In his web video on MeetJoeFrancis.com, Francis echoes those sentiments, warning Panama City’s justice system of their inability to hide from him now that he’s out of jail. He also warned viewers they weren’t immune to injustice. " "We’re fighting back against judicial and government corruption," he said. "If this can happen to me, it can happen to you."

Francis said the settlement with the coeds, who were underage at the time they were filmed, was "coerced by duress and the improper conduct of the women, their parents, and their attorneys."

It becomes a First Amendment issue, he indicated in the video, because government authorities infringed on the citizen’s right to read, hear, or view whatever they choose. Putting someone in jail for eleven months without bail in a civil matter, he contends, is also unconstitutional.

Francis joins scores of others who’ve taken their causes to the web, either in the form of web video, or in the attempt to establish grass roots support for various causes. Google did this recently with its appeal to write the FCC in favor of the use of white spaces for wireless broadband. Also recently was the LetOurCongressTweet campaign, an online coalition to rewrite outdated communication laws regarding legislators.
 

Girls Gone Wild Founder Takes Case To The Web
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