‘Tiger King’: Carole Baskin handed control of Joe Exotic’s zoo

Current occupant Jeff Lowe has 120 days to leave the premises

Big cat enthusiast Carole Baskin has been handed control of her arch-enemy Joe Exotic’s Oklahoma zoo following court proceedings.

The pair were made famous by Netflix‘s hit docuseries Tiger King, which charted their long-running rivalry — including claims by Exotic that Baskin murdered her ex-husband — and Exotic’s eventual conviction for hiring a hitman to assassinate Baskin.

Exotic, real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is currently serving 22 years in prison for the murder-for-hire plot, in addition to 17 counts of animal abuse.


Baskin, who owns the Big Cat Rescue facility in Hillsborough County, Florida, was given control of Exotic’s zoo after he failed to pay her $1 million (£793,850) in copyright and trademark suits dating back to 2013.

The case, which was covered in Tiger King, was brought about by Exotic’s use of similar logos and images to those created and owned by Big Cat Rescue.

Joe Exotic music videos
‘Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness’ is one of Netflix’s biggest 2020 hits (Picture: Netflix)

According to Courthouse News, Baskin also proved to an Oklahoma judge that Exotic had fraudulently transferred the zoo properties to his mother, Shirley M. Schreibvogel, to keep them out of the reach of creditors.

Prior to this judgement the zoo was under the control of Jeff Lowe, who also featured prominently in the Netflix documentary. He now has 120 days to vacate the property he has renamed as Tiger King Park, according to court documents.

Tiger King was a huge hit for Netflix when it debuted earlier this year, and was followed by an additional retrospective episode The Tiger King and I hosted by Community star Joel McHale.


Last week, one of the documentary’s subjects John Reinke said there are more Tiger King episodes on the way.

Last month, the series’ filmmakers said they were now working on a new program about the 2003 tiger mauling that ended the Las Vegas show of entertainment duo Siegfried and Roy.

Dramatic adaptations are also rumoured, with Nicholas Cage said to be in talks to play Joe Exotic and Tara Reid to play Baskin.