OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A former Oklahoma zookeeper sentenced to 22 years in jail for his position in a murder-for-hire plot and violating federal wildlife legal guidelines has formally requested a pardon.
Attorneys for Joseph Maldonado-Passage, often known as “Joe Unique,” filed his utility Tuesday with the U.S. Division of Justice. In it, attorneys for Maldonado-Passage, 57, say he maintains his innocence and that he was “railroaded and betrayed” by others.
“Joseph is scheduled to be launched from (Bureau of Prisons) custody in 2037; nonetheless, along with his comprised well being, he’ll possible die in jail,” attorneys wrote within the 257-page utility. “He humbly requests a pardon to right the injustices he has skilled and to have the chance to return to offering significant contributions to his group.”
The appliance additionally consists of a number of character affidavits, letters of help and varied trial paperwork. A spokeswoman for the Division of Justice mentioned it will be untimely to touch upon the appliance.
Maldonado-Passage was convicted final yr of making an attempt to rearrange the killing of a Florida animal sanctuary founder, Carole Baskin, who criticized his therapy of animals. Baskin wasn’t harmed. Maldonado-Passage additionally was convicted of killing 5 tigers, promoting tiger cubs and falsifying wildlife data.
The blond mullet-wearing zookeeper, identified for his expletive-laden rants on YouTube and a failed 2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial marketing campaign, is prominently featured within the well-liked Netflix documentary “Tiger King: Homicide, Mayhem and Insanity.”
Maldonado-Passage is at the moment housed on the Federal Medical Heart, a 1,500-inmate facility in Forth Price, Texas, jail data present.
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