JOE Exotic, star of Netflix’s Tiger King, let people perform sex acts on the animals he kept at the zoo – and “froze dead tiger cubs” to sell to taxidermists, according to his niece.
Chealsi Putman’s extraordinary claims were reported in The Daily Mail, after she told the tabloid she wanted the public to “know who the real Joe Exotic is”.
Exotic, real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is serving 22 years in prison after being found guilty of hiring a hitman to kill Carole Baskin, an animal rights activist who runs a big cat sanctuary.
He was also found guilty of killing tigers to make room for more big cats.
Exotic is the star of the seven episode long Netflix show, which details his long running feud with Baskin, as well as his escapades at the GW Zoo in Oklahoma.
According to Exotic’s 31-year-old niece, the gun-toting polyamorist sold “countless baby tigers illegally”.
“He would either take cash under the table for the sale of the tiger or if someone sent a check, it would be made out to another person, or if the money was wired to a store, it would be in another person’s name,” she told the paper’s TV arm.
“Over the years there must have been at least 10 tiger cubs that he froze.
“I have no idea what happened to them, they would just disappear.”
Putman added that Exotic allegedly once asked her to take a dead tiger cub to an Oklahoma City taxidermist so it could be stuffed, but she refused his request.
Among other claims Exotic’s niece made was one involving sex acts being performed on some of the animals at the zoo.
“‘I didn’t want to see them, I just heard about them,” she said.
In Exotic’s first prison interview since the show aired, he said he was “ashamed” of how he kept animals caged up for years.
“When I left the zoo and sent my chimpanzees to the sanctuary in Florida and imagined what my chimpanzees went through for 18 years, I am ashamed of myself,” he admitted.
“Go sit in a cage with your animals for a week.”
However, he also admitted that when he does leave prison he will still be “as crazy as I was before” and that “it would be nice if I could see me being famous out there, but I have seen these four walls for a year and half now.”
Exotic’s husband recently confirmed there would be a “live reunion” episode thought to be airing on Netflix this week.
Admitting that “Netflix didn’t contact me to apart of that”, Dillon – who married Joe in December 2018, two weeks after they met – said he had “no idea” if Carole Baskin would be involved.
“It’s more like a talent interview,” he told Andy on his Sirius XM radio show, ” that’s how [the producer] described it.”
In a video message, Jeff Lowe – Exotic’s former business partner and current owner of GW Zoo- spilled the beans, admitting that “Netflix is adding one more episode” and it will be “airing next week” on the streaming service.
“They are filming here tomorrow,” he shared.
The show’s stars have become so controversial that even the president’s son has weighed in.
During an interview with SiriusXM radio, Donald Trump Jr. joked he could lobby for Exotic to be pardoned by his dad, adding the star’s sentence was “aggressive”.
“Now, I don’t even know exactly what he was charged with…,” Trump Jr. told radio hosts.
“I watched the show, but it was like, I don’t know exactly what he was guilty of or wasn’t.
“It doesn’t seem like he was totally innocent of anything. But when they’re saying, ‘We’re putting this guy away for 30 years,’ I’m saying that seems sort of aggressive.”
Trump Jr. had appeared on the radio station’s Jim Norton and Sam Roberts’ show, when he was asked by the latter: “I feel you, Don, Jr., can go in, make a meeting with your dad and go, ‘Look, I know we’re all dealing with corona and there’s a lot going on right now, but at the same time, maybe a presidential pardon for poor Joe Exotic who’s in there?”
Trump Jr responded: “Maybe not right now, but I can generally be for this just for the meme.
“And just for frankly watching the media reaction to this thing. It would be pretty amazing to ultimately see that.”
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