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'Girls Gone Wild' founder Joe Francis apologizes for jury remarks

Justice SystemCrime, Law and JusticeReviewsMichael JacksonAEG

"Girls Gone Wild" founder Joe Francis has apologized for saying the Los Angeles jury that convicted him this month "should all be lined up and shot."

In a 259-word statement issued early Thursday, Francis said his comments to the Hollywood Reporter "were hurtful and do not reflect my true feelings."

"I am truly, truly sorry," he said. "I hope everyone will understand I was not being serious and that I fully and deeply apologize for my remarks."

As Show Tracker reported Wednesday, the 40-year-old criticized the jurors who found him guilty of imprisoning three women at his Bel-Air home. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 9.

"If that jury wants to convict me because I didn't show up [to court], which is the only reason why they did, then, you know, they should all be lined up and shot," Francis told the Reporter.

"Only the stupidest of the stupidest people end up on juries, you know?" he added.

Francis maintained his innocence in his apology, saying, "I am not, nor have I ever been, a violent person."

"My comments are appalling, but anyone who has ever been wrongfully convicted of a crime that they did NOT commit would be as frustrated as I am," he said.

It wasn't the first time Francis has found himself in a courtroom.

He has been accused of crimes including filming girls underage, keeping poor records and tax fraud. Most recently, Las Vegas mogul Steve Wynn won a multimillion-dollar defamation suit against Francis, who claimed he had proof Wynn cheated "high-end customers."

In 2006, he slammed a female Los Angeles Times reporter against a car and twisted her arm behind her back, as noted in her story.

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Twitter: @katemather | Google+
kate.mather@latimes.com

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