12:20 PM PDT, November 4, 2021
Joe Maldonado, famously known as Joe Exotic from the Netflix docuseries “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” has announced that he has been diagnosed with an “aggressive cancer” as he remains in jail for a murder-for-hire plot.
Maldonado was convicted in 2019 for hiring someone to kill animal rights activists Carole Baskin, as well as other charges related to animal abuse. In a recent letter to CNN announcing his diagnosis, Maldonado wrote, “It is with a sad face that I have to tell you the doctors called me in today to break the news that my prostate biopsy came back with an aggressive cancer. I am still waiting on the results from other tests as well.”
“Right now, I don’t want anyone’s pity,” he also wrote.
Maldonado was sentenced to 22 years in January 2020 for his crime. His attorney told CNN that he had been undergoing a series of tests before the diagnosis.
“The PSA test is a blood test used primarily to screen for prostate cancer. It was high. He finally obtained biopsies. They revealed cancer. Medical care is different in a prison environment and fewer options are available,” Phillips said.
Maldonado has maintained his innocence, despite his conviction, and had previously requested a pardon from former President Trump.
“If I have ever looked up to anyone it would be you,” Maldonado wrote in the letter to the former president “Not because I need you to save my life but because you stand for what you believe no matter what anyone thinks.”