A federal judge has KWTV. The new sentencing shaves off one year of the “Tiger King” docu-series star’s original 22-year sentence.Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, to 21 years in prison for a murder-for-hire plot targeting animal activist , according to CBS affiliate
Maldonado-Passage was convicted in 2019 on 21 counts, including 19 counts of wildlife crimes and two for hiring hitmen to kill Baskin. He was sentenced to 22 years in prison in 2020, but later appealed the decision for what he argued were errors made on behalf of the court. He claimed that his two murder-for-hire convictions were wrongly separated and argued that Baskin was unfairly allowed to attend the entire trial despite her status as a witness.
A district court in 2021 upheld its decision to let Baskin attend the proceedings, but agreed with Maldonado-Passage that the court should have grouped the two murder-for-hire convictions.
At Friday’s re-sentencing, Maldonado-Passage pleaded to a federal judge: “Please don’t make me die in prison waiting for a chance to be free,” according to the Associated Press. He in November that he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Baskin and her husband attended the proceedings on Friday, the AP reports.
Court documents have described Maldonado-Passage’s relationship to Baskin as a “rivalry made in heaven.” Baskin, who owns the animal sanctuary Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, Florida, has criticized Maldonado-Passage’s formerly-owned parks and practices, saying that he abused his animals.
She later sued Maldonado-Passage for copyright and trademark infringement and left him bankrupt. He then launched an array of social media threats against her, in what she described as a dangerous obsession, the documents said.
In 2017, he allegedly began to plot her murder, hiring one of his park employees, and subsequently an undercover FBI agent, to “cut her head off.”