CELEBRITY

Joe Francis Says Jury Is 'Retarded' & 'Should Be Shot Dead': 'Girls Gone Wild' Founder Backtracks On 'Appalling' Comments

05/23/2013 03:16 pm ET | Updated May 24, 2013

"Girls Gone Wild" founder Joe Francis thinks the jury that convicted him of imprisoning three women and assaulting one is "retarded."

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter the day after he was found guilty, the 40-year-old soft-core porn mogul shouted at his interviewer:

I want that jury to know that each and every one of you are mentally f**king retarded and you should be euthanized because, as Darwin said, you have naturally selected yourself. You are the weakest members of the herd. Goodbye! And if that jury wants to convict me because I didn't show up, which is the only reason why they did, then, you know, they should all be lined up and shot!

It's par for the course for Francis, who is known for his volatile temper and has a lengthy history of legal trouble. He's since issued an apology, telling THR in a statement, that he "deeply" regrets the remarks he made, but they do not reflect his true feelings.

"While I disagree with the jury's verdict as I am completely innocent of the charges and intend to appeal, I was afforded a fair trial, and if I lose at the appellate level, I will reluctantly but fully accept the jury's verdict," he said, adding, "I am not, nor have I ever been a violent person."

Francis went on to admit that his comments were "appalling," but he maintains that he was "wrongfully convicted" and believes anyone in his position would be just as frustrated as he is.

"I want to apologize to all the jurors, the court, the City Attorney and my attorneys for my comments that were manipulated by the media, and please know I am truly ashamed of my conduct. I am truly, truly sorry," he said.

His apology was not unexpected since he has yet to be sentenced and faces up to five years in prison for his crimes, and he's likely worried that his comments could mean more time served when he's sentenced in July.

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