LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - U.S. casino owner Steve Wynn won $20 million in punitive damages for defamation on Tuesday, doubling his total judgment in a lawsuit accusing "Girls Gone Wild" creator Joe Francis of slandering him by falsely claiming that Wynn had threatened his life over a gambling debt.
A Los Angeles County Superior Court jury deliberated for about two hours before reaching its decision in the second phase of a defamation trial that capped a protracted, high-stakes legal feud between the two men.
On Monday, following a week-long trial that included testimony from legendary music producer Quincy Jones, the same jury awarded Wynn $20 million in damages for infliction of emotional distress and injury to his reputation.
The jurors also found that Francis had acted with malice, opening the door to additional damages intended as punishment. The $20 million punitive sum was decided after a subsequent round of testimony and arguments presented on Tuesday.
"There have been bigger defamation awards (but) I don't know that there have been many," Mitchell Langberg, one of Wynn's lawyers, said of the $40 million total.
Joe never seems to be able to stay out of trouble or learn from his mistakes, does he? After abusing women and going to prison more than once, Joe continues to create his own downfall. Perhaps he is unconsciously trying to punish himself for his many crimes against humanity, and especially those that have been so harmful to so many women and girls...
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