Girls Gone Wild Founder Hit With Another $20M Verdict

Steve Wynn now owed $40M by 'digital assassin'

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 12, 2012 1:31 AM CDT

(Newser) – Bad-mouthing casino mogul Steve Wynn has cost Joe Francis $20 million for the second day in a row. A jury awarded Wynn $20 million in punitive damages in his defamation lawsuit against the Girls Gone Wild founder yesterday, after awarding him $20 million in compensatory damages Monday, reports the Los Angeles Times. Wynn, who sued after Francis claimed he had threatened to have him killed over a gambling debt, plans to donate the money to charity, TMZ reports.

"Joe Francis represents a new kind of criminal type: the digital assassin. He takes advantage of the protection afforded by the Internet to issue intentionally destructive charges against someone’s reputation," Wynn said in a statement. "Thank God for the justice system that finally sent a message: If you think you’re taking a cheap shot, it may be a lot more expensive than you had imagined."

Joe Francis attends the House of Hype Music Awards at the Beverly Hills Hotel last week.   (Photo by Arnold Turner/Invision/AP, File)
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