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Joe Exotic Has Sentence Vacated By Federal Appeals Court, But Will Remain Behind Bars

Joe Exotic

The prison sentence of Joseph Maldonado-Passage — more commonly known as Joe Exotic — was vacated by a federal appeals court on Wednesday.

The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a lower court erred by not grouping his two murder-for-hire convictions at sentencing.

But that doesn't mean Maldonado-Passage will be released from prison, as his convictions were upheld. He will be re-sentenced at a later date and will likely receive a shorter sentence than the 22 years he originally received.

The former Wynnewood big cat breeder was found guilty by a jury in 2019 in two murder-for-hire plots and federal wildlife violations.

Maldonado-Passage was the focus of last year's popular Netflix documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.

He is currently being held at a federal prison medical center in Fort Worth, Texas.

Ryan LaCroix is the Director of Content and Audience Development for KOSU.
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