(WASHINGTON) -- Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection for his softcore porn business, GGW Brands LLC, amid a legal battle with casino mogul Steve Wynn.
Francis, 39, filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday in California, a move that will protect his assets against a long-standing lawsuit by Wynn, reported The Wall Street Journal.
Among the four largest creditors that Francis listed, the largest was $10.3 million in disputed debt with Wynn Las Vegas. The dispute stems from a $2 million gambling debt Francis incurred during a trip to the resort in February 2007, according to court papers.
Last year, a judgment of $7.5 million was given to the hotel for defamation “stemming from Francis’s public attack falsely accusing Wynn of deceiving customers,” according to the lawsuit filed by the resort. In September, a jury awarded Wynn another $20 million for punitive damages for slander.
GGW Brands LLC’s other creditors owed the largest amounts of money include Tamara Favazza, a woman who won a lawsuit against the company in April 2012. Favazza said she was dancing at a club in St. Louis in 2005 when a contract worker for Girls Gone Wild lifted her tank top. At the time she was a 20-year-old college student.
The bankruptcy filing indicates the judgment to Favazza is $5,772,588.
Other women featured in Girls Gone Wild productions have sued the company. Lindsey Boyd sued, saying she was exploited as a 14-year-old about 12 years ago during a spring break trip.
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