Tags: Hollywood | tiger king | michael jackson | alligators | netflix

'Tiger King' Alligators Killed in Fire Tied to Michael Jackson

joseph maldonado-passage, aka joe exotic
Joseph Maldonado-Passage, aka Joe Exotic (Sue Ogrocki/AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 01 April 2020 01:52 PM

The Netflix documentary "Tiger King" is a surging hit, generating controversy and headlines, and now a new charge has emerged that the alligators killed in a blaze at Joe Exotic's Oklahoma zoo once belonged to Michael Jackson. The connection shared between Joseph Maldonado-Passage (aka Joe Exotic) and the King of Pop came to light in a report published by Fox News on Wednesday.

In 2015 a fire broke out at the zoo, causing severe damage and claiming the lives of several alligators. Exotic, the focus of Netflix cult hit show "Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness," said at the time that the reptiles killed in the blaze were obtained from Jackson's Neverland ranch upon its closure.

It was later reported that the baby alligators that had died at the zoo were offspring from one of Jackson's alligators that lived with him at Neverland.

Exotic spoke of the fire in a YouTube video published on March 28, 2015.

"As most of you know, an arsonist hit our facility a day before yesterday in the sometime wee hours and set fire to not only my recording studio but the studio that houses our alligators, which caused them all to burn up and perish, boiling alive in a towering inferno of nothing but flames and fire," he said.

Last week it emerged that Exotic had filed a lawsuit while in prison against an ex-business partner as well as the feds. The former big-cat breeder and roadside zoo operator was put behind bars on charges of murder-for-hire against an animal rights activist last year. He was also handed 17 federal wildlife charges, which included killing five endangered tigers.

Now Exotic is asking the U.S. Federal Wildlife Service for $78.84 million for the loss of personal property as well as losing nearly 20 years of "research and care of 200 generic tigers and cross-breeds for 365 days a year."

He claims the agency was working against him by deliberately putting tigers on the endangered species list "for the sole purpose of allowing animal rights groups to sue small zoos and circuses" and to make "privately owned tigers extinct," according to the New York Post.

Exotic insists the FWS was being pressured by animal rights activists, which amounted to "stealing my property and promoting an animal rights agenda."

Exotic is also going after former colleague Jeff Low, who he insists had planted evidence and lied to government. He is seeking $15 million in damages on claims that the stress ultimately led to the death of his mother.

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The Netflix documentary "Tiger King" is a surging hit, generating controversy and headlines, and now a new charge has emerged that the alligators killed in a blaze at Joe Exotic's Oklahoma zoo once belonged to Michael Jackson.
tiger king, michael jackson, alligators, netflix
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2020-52-01
Wednesday, 01 April 2020 01:52 PM
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