A federal appeals court has ordered former zoo owner and “Netflix” star Joe Exotic to be re-sentenced for his conviction in a murder-for-hire plot. The “Tiger King” star — real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage — was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in a federal lockup for trying to hire two men to kill his nemesis, Big Cat Rescue owner Carole Baskin.
A three-judge panel in Denver’s Court of Appeals ruled that the original sentence was issued using the wrong sentencing guidelines. The judges found the trial court should have treated the murder-for-hire convictions as one since they both involved the goal of having Baskin killed. The proper sentencing range should have been between 17 ½ to just under 22 years, the panel wrote, not just under 22 years to 27 years in prison.
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[Feature Photo: Joe Exotic/Police Handout]