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Tiger King’s Joe Exotic Reveals Cancer Diagnosis, Requests Prison Release

Asking for help. Joe Exotic is hoping to get released from prison after learning that he has an “aggressive” form of cancer.

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“Doctors called me in today to break the news that my prostate biopsy came back with an aggressive cancer,” the 58-year-old tweeted on Wednesday, November 3.

The Tiger King star, whose real name Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, pointed out that his longtime rival Carole Baskin “will have her own party” over the news.

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Additionally, the former Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park owner outlined his plans to end his 22-year prison stay early amid his health issues. He is currently in jail for allegedly orchestrating a foiled murder-for-hire plot to kill Baskin, 60, and multiple wildlife violations.

“Right now, I don’t want anyone’s pity,” the former Oklahoma zookeeper wrote in the letter to “everyone” dated October 27. “What I need is the world to be my voice to be released.”

The reality star claimed that the courts “have the proof I did not go this” and therefore “there is no reason for the U.S. Attorney to drag this out.”

Maldonado-Passage pleaded with his fans to help persuade the powers that be to get him early release so he can “go home and get treatment on my own or enjoy what I life I have left with my loved ones.”

He concluded: “Say a prayer please. Be my voice please.”

In 2019, the Kansas native was convicted of 17 federal charges of animal abuse and two counts of attempted murder-for-hire after allegedly hiring a hitman to kill Baskin, who is the CEO of Big Cat Rescue in Florida. He was sentenced to 22 years in prison in January 2020, two months before his story became the central focus of Netflix’s Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.

Earlier this year, Maldonado-Passage announced via social media that he and husband Dillon Passage were getting divorced. The couple met in November 2017 and wed one month later. Most of their marriage has been spent with the “Here Kitty Kitty” musician behind bars.

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“Dillon thinks having to sleep alone and not have me out there is so rough and hard to deal with to the point he has to leave me,” the Netflix star wrote via Instagram in March. “Now I don’t even have a home.”

Days later, Maldonado-Passage’s lawyer Francisco Hernandez confirmed to Us Weekly that the duo had chosen to press pause on the divorce proceedings. After a phone call between the couple, they decided they will “stay married right now so things don’t get complicated,” Hernandez said in March.

Last month, Netflix dropped the official trailer for season 2 of the Tiger King docuseries. The five-episode season, which drops on November 17, will focus on Maldonado-Passage’s prison sentence, his alleged innocence and Baskin’s missing husband, Don Lewis, who hasn’t been seen since 1997.

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