Joe Exotic (pictured in his mugshot) said in a statement that Carole Baskin owning his Oklahoma zoo is ‘treachery’
Tiger King star Joe Exotic says Carole Baskin being awarded his Oklahoma zoo is ‘treachery’ and is yet another ’emotional blow to an already fragile’ Exotic.
This week, a judge granted Baskin, 58, full control of Exotic’s infamous 16.4-acre G.W. Exotic Animal Memorial Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma, after ruling in her favor over fraudulent land transfer documents.
Exotic, whose real name is Joe Maldonado-Passage, 57, is currently serving a 22-year prison sentence in a botched murder-for-hire scheme against Baskin and additional animal abuse charges.
On Wednesday, Exotic’s management team spoke out on Twitter to call Baskin’s alleged campaign against Exotic ‘treachery’ in a statement that also acknowledged the death of George Floyd, a black man killed while in police custody in Minnesota.
‘While we again acknowledge it is truly time to pray for justice for George Floyd’s family as well as an end to systemic racism in America, we must address Carol Baskin’s treachery before it goes unchecked,’ they wrote on Twitter.
In a separate Twitter post, Exotic’s management said Baskin’s takeover of G.W. Exotic Animal Memorial Park ‘is a dark day in history.’
‘It is a dark day in history when someone takes a man’s life’s work while the world isn’t looking,’ the tweet read.
‘Carole Baskin has stolen the Zoo while Joe is helpless behind bars and the world is trying to fix the brokenness in our police departments.’
According to the attached statement, Exotic’s ability to fight Baskin has been stifled while being in prison.
‘This ruling is yet another emotional blow to an already fragile Joe, who has spent the past 3 straight months in solitary confinement. He has been completely unable to defend himself,’ the statement read.
Joe Exotic left the 16.4-acre G.W. Exotic Animal Memorial Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma to his former business partner Jeff Lowe and his mother, but a judge has ruled that his transfer of the zoo land to them a few years ago was fraudulent, it was revealed Monday. He is currently serving a 22-year jail sentence for animal abuse charges and hiring a hitman to kill Baskin
They added that Exotic’s legal team is already working to overturn the ruling and drawing support from Exotic’s supporters, which has grown since the premier of Netflix’s Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness docuseries.
‘As hard as this news is, we refuse to accept defeat. Even as we type this message, Joe’s legal team is filing appeals and his social media/PR team are rallying public support.’
Exotic’s legal team added their own message and said their singular goal is to free their client from prison.
‘Our single goal is Joe’s Freedom. Joe cannot fight something from solitary confinement imposed to suppress his rights,’ they wrote.
They added that although disappointed, the Baskin’s legal victory was expected.
‘We’ve known Carole was going to prevail. We pray for the safety of the Tigers,’ they wrote.
‘We are focused on justice for Joe and that means a pardon that gets him out of jail and able to set the record straight.’
Earlier this week, a judge granted Baskin, owner of Big Cat Rescue, control of the land to help satisfy a $1million judgement that Exotic was ordered to pay her for copyright infringement.
Exotic left the zoo to his former business partner Jeff Lowe and his mother, but a judge has ruled that his transfer of the zoo land to them a few years ago was fraudulent, it was revealed Monday.
A view of Exotic’s 16.4-acre G.W. Exotic Animal Memorial Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma above
The massive property was where Exotic held many of his tigers and lions and exotic animals
Lowe has 120 days to vacate the premises, including all of his exotic animals residing there, according to a copy of the ruling published by Courthouse News Service.
Big Cat Rescue was also granted ownership of several additional cabins and multiple vehicles on the property as well.
Baskin’s company Big Cat Rescue sued Exotic’s mother Shirley M. Schreibvogel alleging that the transfer of the Oklahoma zoo was fraudulent in February 2016.
Schreibvogel allegedly later admitted in 2015 that the zoo land was fraudulently handed to her in 2011 to avoid creditors.
‘Schreibvogel later admitted under oath that the zoo land was transferred to her by Joe Maldonado to remove it from the reach of creditors, including BCR, should BCR win its Florida lawsuit,’ the complaint says.
The zoo had re-opened just last month and was renamed Tiger King Park following the craze and massive following from the Netflix documentary.
However, according to Tiger King director Eric Goode, it hasn’t been making much money.
‘No one is going now and there’s no source of income, and that’s been going on for a long time. It’s not something that has just happened because of what’s happening in the world today,’ Goode said to Entertainment Weekly in March.
But Lowe said he and his wife Lauren aren’t too choked up about losing the property, as they already opened a new park also in Oklahoma.
Jeff Lowe has been running the park for the past few years. Pictured above with wife Lauren
‘We have long anticipated that the judge would eventually undo the 2016 land transfer. We are thankful that he dragged out his decision this long and allowed us time to complete the new Tiger King Park in Thackerville, Oklahoma, behind the World’s largest casino,’ Loew said to TMZ.
‘Considering [Carole] spent approximately 2.5million chasing her 1million judgment, we congratulate her on her new acquisition of 16 acres in rural Oklahoma,’ the couple said.
‘The possibility of human remains being buried on this land should make her feel right at home,’ they added, citing rumors that Baskin could have killer her missing second husband Don Lewis who disappeared without a trace in 1997.
Exotic perpetuated the theory that Baskin killed her husband, Jack ‘Don’ Lewis, and fed his body to one of the big cats on her reserve.
Don Lewis, former owner of Wildlife on Easy Street in Florida, mysteriously disappeared in 1997 shortly before his second wife Baskin took control of his will. A sheriff working on the case has now confirmed that his will was forged
Carole Baskin, pictured right, was the last person to see her husband Don Lewis, left
The allegations have been vehemently refuted by Baskin, but it was a leading plot point throughout the show and resulted in investigators reopening the case in April.
Since then, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister told 10 Tampa Bay that experts determined Lewis’ will was ‘100 percent a forgery’ casting ‘another shadow of suspicion’ on his disappearance.
Lewis has never been found, nor has any evidence to suggest he was murdered, though authorities have previously stated they don’t believe he disappeared on his own volition.
Shortly after his disappearance, Baskin – his wife at the time and the last known person to see him alive – produced his will and his power of attorney that gave her complete control of his $5 million estate.
Shortly afterward his disappearance, Baskin – his wife at the time and the last known person to see him alive – produced his will and his power of attorney that gave her control of his estate and $5 million in assets. She has denied any involvement in his disappearance
Lewis’ former attorney has previously claimed that his client’s signature was forged on two documents that effectively surrendered his fortune to the Tiger King star after he vanished.
‘They called in some experts to say the will was a forgery, but I had already told them that two months ago,’ he said.
‘Because the girl who came forward and said “hey, I was forced to witness and say that I witnessed these signatures”.
‘The problem was that the statute of limitations had already expires,’ he added.
‘The will had already been executed but it certainly cast another shadow of suspicion by all means.’
Chronister added that the investigation has cropped up new leads in Lewis’ vanishing. He was formally declared dead in 2002 and his remains never uncovered.