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Joe Francis accused of rape

Florida- Miami Beach police are investigating allegations that the producer of the infamous ”Girls Gone Wild” videos raped a Texas woman he invited to his South Beach hotel room earlier this month.

A spokesman for Joseph Francis, 30, who made a fortune producing videos of young women flashing and kissing each other during parties, said the film company owner was in Miami Beach to promote his business the weekend of March 12. But he denied the alleged crime took place.

”Joe Francis was in Miami on March 12,” spokesman Terry Fahn said Monday. “He only had consensual sex. He did not rape anyone.

Fahn added: “Joe is willing to take a lie detector test to prove it if necessary. He’s curious to see if the person making the allegations would do the same.”

The 21-year-old woman, a college student, told police she met Francis at the Di Lido Beach Club inside the Ritz-Carlton on South Beach, according to a police report. The woman’s friend recognized Francis, who is often in the news because of his controversial videos.

The woman told The Herald in an interview Monday that she had three drinks at the bar — a shot of tequila and two mixed cocktails. Then, at Francis’ invitation, she and her friend went up to his hotel room. Later, she blacked out.

The woman told police she thought her drink may have been drugged.

”I didn’t think I’d get so drunk after three drinks,” she explained in an interview.

The woman woke up naked the next morning in Francis’ bed. He was naked, too, she said. She couldn’t remember what happened hours before, she told police.

The woman told police that Francis wanted to have sex, but she refused. Francis allegedly replied, ”Why, if we already did last night?” according to her statement on the police report.

The woman said she got dressed, woke up her friend who was asleep on a couch, and then they left the hotel room. The woman drove herself to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Rape Treatment Center. A rape kit was completed and forwarded to Miami Beach sexual battery detectives.

The woman said in an interview that she asked for a blood test to see if she had been drugged but was told that only police could order that. At that point, she hadn’t decided whether to make a formal police complaint, so the test wasn’t taken.

The next day, the woman flew home to Texas without contacting police. But four days later, on March 17, she called the department and made a formal complaint.

Francis most recently made headlines when he and several of his employees were arrested in Panama City in April 2003 after parents complained that their daughters, who were underage, were filmed in Francis’ wild videos. State prosecutors said that underage girls were filmed showing their breasts and performing sex acts. The case is still in court.

Francis was also charged with drug trafficking when arrested because he had potent tranquilizers. Francis had prescriptions for them, and the charges were dropped.


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