BUSINESS

Girls Gone Wild Files For Bankruptcy

02/28/2013 01:35 pm ET | Updated Feb 28, 2013

Girls Gone Wild, the famed adult entertainment franchise, is filing for bankruptcy.

The company filed for Chapter 11 protection Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reports, in an attempt to prevent the Wynn Las Vegas resort from collecting debt worth $10.3 million as part of a lawsuit against the company’s founder, Joe Francis. Neither Francis nor the lawsuit are mentioned in the bankruptcy filing, according to Bloomberg.

"Girls Gone Wild remains strong as a company and strong financially," a company spokesman wrote in an e-mail statement to The Huffington Post. "The only reason Girls Gone Wild has elected to file for this reorganization is to re-structure its frivolous and burdensome legal affairs. This Chapter 11 filing will not affect any of Girls Gone Wild’s domestic or international operations. Just like American Airlines and General Motors, it will be business as usual for Girls Gone Wild.”

In 2009, after being sent to Los Angeles County Court over claims he owned the casino a $2 million gambling debt, Francis allegedly claimed the casino’s CEO Steve Wynn threatened to kill him, according to the Hollywood Reporter. A jury ruled that Francis' allegations constituted defamation and ordered Francis to pay Wynn $20 million.

The gambling debt case was ultimately thrown out in 2011.

Lawyers for the Wynn Resort have started to go after the Girls Gone Wild's assets to get the money from Francis, according to the WSJ. By filing for bankruptcy, Francis stopped the company’s ability to collect.

Francis is no stranger to financial trouble. The soft-core porn mogul plead guilty in 2009 to filing false tax returns and admitted he left more than $500,000 in earned interest off of his tax return in 2003, according to the Los Angeles Times. He spent 301 days in jail on the tax evasion charges and also plead guilty to bribing prison workers for food during his time there.

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