Joe Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, and his team continues to fight for his freedom after his request for a presidential pardon was denied.
Today, the fight continues, something Joe’s team had not planned for.
“There is no conversation for me to be had about what if, what if,” Team Tiger team leader Eric Love said. “We are confident 100 percent we will be getting this pardon.”
Despite Maldonado-Passage’s conviction in 2019 for a murder-for-hire plot and violating wildlife laws, his team was so confident he would walk away from prison, a limo was waiting to whisk him away.
According to Joe and his legal team, the last two and a half years behind bars have taken its toll. Maldonado-Passage met with his attorneys this week.
“We were walking away. We’re not allowed to contact, COVID(-19), all that, and then I touched his hand, and he said, ‘That’s the first time I’ve been touched by a human in 2.5 years,’” attorney Francisco Hernandez said. “It was like a bolt of lightning. Nobody deserves that no matter what they did.”
Joe’s team released a statement late Wednesday morning.
“140 million Joe Exotic fans had a hard time getting out of bed this morning. We are as disappointed that the President did not sign Joe’s pardon, as we were confident yesterday that he would,” the statement began. “It is only because of you 140 million fans that Joe’s pardon was even a possibility. Since his trial, the evidence has made it clear that Joe is not guilty but, rather, he is a victim of the persons he trusted most.
“Team Tiger, just this morning spent two hours on the telephone with Joe and listened to his Direct Appeal Oral Arguments by Brandon Sample in Colorado. We will not stop. We will not rest until Joe’s injustice is corrected.”