'Tiger King' star 'Doc' Antle convicted in Virginia wildlife trafficking case

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FREDERICK COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) – Bhagavan Antle, more commonly known as “Doc” Antle from the Netflix series “Tiger King,” was convicted in Virginia court last Friday on multiple felony counts linked to wildlife trafficking.

This image provided by the Horry County Sheriff’s Office in Conway, S.C., shows Bhagavan “Doc” Antle, who was arrested by the FBI, Friday, June 3, 2022, on federal money laundering charges. (Horry County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

The Office of the Attorney General’s Animal Law Unit began an investigation into the illegal purchase of these animals in 2019. It is believed that Antle allegedly purchased endangered lion cubs in Frederick County, Virginia, for display and profit at his zoo business in South Carolina. 

Virginia’s animal cruelty laws are not taken lightly by my office. I’m proud of my Animal Law Unit for their tireless work and I’m thrilled that the jury not only agreed with us but sent a message that Virginia does not tolerate wildlife animal trafficking.”

Attorney General Miyares

On Friday, June 16, Antle was found guilty of two felony counts of wildlife trafficking and two felony counts of conspiring to wildlife traffic by a jury in Frederick County.

Antle’s next court appearance is set for September 14, 2023, when he will receive sentencing.

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