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Joe Exotic resentenced to 21 years in prison

The resentencing comes after an appeals court said improper sentencing guidelines were used in 2020.
Posted at 1:00 PM, Jan 28, 2022

OKLAHOMA CITY — Joe Exotic was resentenced Friday to 21 years in prison for a murder-for-hire conviction.

The former zookeeper, made famous on the Netflix show Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, was found guilty of trying to hire two men to kill Carole Baskin, an animal welfare activist.

Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, was originally sentenced in 2020 to 22 years in prison.

A three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with Maldonado-Passage that the court should have treated them as one conviction at sentencing because they both involved the same goal of killing Baskin.

Maldonado-Passage’s punishment was reduced Friday by one year after an appeals court ordered a new sentence, saying improper sentencing guidelines were used.

Several of Maldonado-Passage’s supporters were in court Friday, wearing animal-print masks and t-shirts that read: “Free Joe Exotic.”

The court also heard Baskin, who testified that she was fearful that Maldonado-Passage could threaten her.