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Attorney Sues Joe Francis for Legal Fees

PANAMA CITY, Florida- www.newsherald.com – — Panama City attorney Jean Marie Downing filed suit in federal court last week, seeking $77,558.15 in legal fees and costs from Joe Francis.

Downing represented Francis, CEO of the companies that produce and distribute the “Girls Gone Wild” DVDs, in a lawsuit in 2007 and 2008. Downing said in her complaint that she was hired Oct. 12, 2007, to represent Francis in his lawsuit with Brittany Pitts, who claimed she was 16 when a cameraman filmed her flashing during Spring Break 2002 in Panama City Beach. Pitts dropped the lawsuit in July 2008.

Downing said in her complaint that she agreed to work for a fee of $250 an hour, with a minimum of $2,500 paid to her each month. She said she accrued $94,207 in fees and $10,886 in costs. Francis, she said, still owes her $77,558.15, despite repeated attempts to collect. She said in the suit the sides have reached an impasse, which led to her filing suit.

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