Joe Francis has plead not guilty to one count of alleged misdemeanor sexual battery, a charge stemming from an incident in January when Francis allegedly fondled an 18-year-old against her will.
Francis pleaded-out through his lawyer, Aaron Dyer, in L.A. County Court, reports TMZ.com, while the “Girls Gone Wild” founder is in Oklahoma under the watch of U.S. Marshals.
Francis is scheduled to wind up in Reno, Nev., where he’ll be arraigned on federal tax evasion charges.
TMZ reported in March that Francis was at a birthday party in L.A. when he allegedly touched the teen girl on the breast, buttocks and inner thigh, she allegedly asked him to stop.
TMZ reports Francis faces a maximum of six months in jail and a $2,000 fine if convicted.
Francis’ lawyer, Aaron S. Dyer, gave an exclusive interview with TMZ and said: “The allegations made by the alleged victim claiming she was “touched” are ridiculous. There is absolutely no merit to these charges. Mr. Francis is a successful man in a high profile position, and unfortunately, that makes him a target of people who hope to benefit in some way from attacking him.
Mr. Francis isn’t going to sit by and put up with these types of baseless attacks. He will vigorously defend himself and take whatever action necessary to clear his name. We believe that the Court or the City Attorney’s office will ultimately be convinced to dismiss this matter.”Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.