Joseph Maldonado-Passage, known famously as Joe Exotic, has filed lawsuits from prison totaling nearly $94 million.
Per legal documents obtained by TMZ, the star of Netflix’s popular docuseries “Tiger King” is taking legal action against the U.S. Department of Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for placing the “generic tiger” on the endangered species list.
As depicted in the program, Maldonado-Passage was the former operator of Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in Oklahoma, which housed hundreds of big cats including tigers, lions, pumas, ligers and tigons.
According to the legal paperwork, Maldonado-Passage believes the government did this to take out businesses like his, and to promote their alleged “animal rights agenda.”
Additionally, Maldonado-Passage alleges that a wildlife agent “knowingly accepted statements he knew were false, allowing his witnesses to lie under oath,” and that he was targeted “because [he] is an openly gay male with the largest collection of generic tigers and crossbreeds.”
Because of this, Maldonado-Passage — who once ran for president of the United States as well as governor of Oklahoma — wants $78,840,000 for loss of personal property, as well as the 18 years of research and care that went into his work with animals.
Additionally, Maldonado-Passage — who was sentenced to 22 years in prison after he was convicted on 17 federal charges of animal abuse and two counts of a murder-for-hire plot to kill Carole Baskin, the chief executive officer of Big Cat Rescue animal sanctuary — alleges former business partner Jeffrey Lowe filed false statements to federal agents.
“He was the main person in this entrapment scheme to take my zoo for free,” Maldonado-Passage alleges. “Changed my medicine with illegal drugs, stole my animals under fraudulent reasons.”
With all of this allegedly “contributing to” the death of his mother Shirley, Maldonado-Passage wants $15 million for false arrest, false imprisonment, and selective enforcement.
Maldonado-Passage remains behind bars at the Grandy County Jail in Oklahoma.