Joe Exotic : ‘Tiger King’ resentenced to 21 years in prison in murder-for-hire case

Sentence is one year less than his original one

Sam Moore
Friday 28 January 2022 18:35
Surviving Joe Exotic trailer

Tiger King star Joe Exotic has been resentenced to 21 years in prison for his role in plotting to murder Carole Baskin.

The zoo owner and reality star’s lawyers have said they will be asking for a new trial.

The sentence is one year less than the original one of 22 years. Exotic’s defence team had asked for a new sentence of 7.5 years

Exotic was originally convicted of hiring hit men to kill Baskin in 2020 but has repeatedly maintained his innocence. A federal appeals court ordered a resentencing because of a mistake relating to sentencing guidelines.

Prosecutors alleged that Exotic wanted Baskin killed as she was a vocal critic of his zoo and his treatment of animals.

In court, Exotic said that any prison time would be a “death sentence” as he was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year. As he was convicted in 2020, the 58-year-old currently has between 18 and 19 years left in prison.

He told the judge: “Please don’t make me die in prison waiting for a chance to be free.” He later repeated his claims that he was innocent and had been set-up.

Baskin also spoke during the hearing, where she said she was still “fearful” of him.

As Exotic was sentenced, there were a number of his supporters in the courtroom wearing shirts that said “Free Joe Exotic”.

As well as murder-for-hire, Exotic was also convicted of killing tigers, selling cubs and falsifying wildlife forms.

Both Exotic and Baskin rose to fame through Netflix documentary Tiger King which depicted the world of big cat conservationists and commercial zoos that hosted tigers. They also appeared in separate documentaries from Louis Theroux.

A sequel to Tiger King premiered on Netflix late last year but was criticised by Baskin and negatively received by reviewers.

More to come...

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