“Doc” Antle, the animal trainer featured in the popular Netflix series “Tiger King,” has been handed a two-year suspended sentence for wildlife trafficking in Virginia, according to an announcement by the state attorney general’s office. The guilty plea also resulted in Antle being banned from owning and handling exotic wild animals in Virginia for five years. The charges against Antle stemmed from allegations of illegally purchasing endangered lion cubs in Frederick County, Virginia, and displaying them for profit at his South Carolina zoo. He was convicted of two counts of wildlife trafficking and conspiracy to traffic wildlife in June, leading to a 20-year prison sentence. Antle, the owner of Myrtle Beach Safari, became known to the public through his appearance in the Netflix documentary miniseries “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” which delved into the world of tiger ranchers. Prosecutors claimed that Antle’s petting zoo at Myrtle Beach Safari incentivized him to acquire a continuous supply of underage lion cubs, leading to illegal cub exchanges in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Attorney General Jason Miares highlighted that this case demonstrates Virginia’s commitment to upholding the rule of law and sending a clear message against wildlife trafficking.
Q: What was “Doc” Antle convicted of?
A: “Doc” Antle was convicted of two counts of wildlife trafficking and conspiracy to traffic wildlife.
Q: What was the punishment for Antle’s convictions?
A: Antle received a two-year suspended sentence and a five-year ban on owning and handling exotic wild animals in Virginia.
Q: What were the charges against Antle related to?
A: The charges were related to Antle’s alleged illegal purchase of endangered lion cubs in Virginia and their display for profit at his South Carolina zoo.
Q: How did the public become familiar with “Doc” Antle?
A: “Doc” Antle gained public recognition through his appearance in the Netflix documentary miniseries “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.”
Q: What did prosecutors claim about Antle’s petting zoo?
A: Prosecutors asserted that Antle’s petting zoo at Myrtle Beach Safari encouraged him to maintain a constant supply of underage lion cubs, leading to illegal cub exchanges in multiple years.
Q: What message did the attorney general highlight regarding this case?
A: Attorney General Jason Miares emphasized that Virginia upholds the rule of law without exception, including in cases related to wildlife trafficking.