By Andrea Towers
April 21, 2021 at 10:26 AM EDT

Tiger King star Joe Exotic has responded to the comments from Carole Baskin and her husband Howard, in which they claimed they would support his early release from prison. In a new interview with Entertainment Tonight, Exotic (who goes by Joseph Maldonado-Passage), said: "It's time for Carole and Howard to put up or shut the hell up because I'm accepting their offer."

Howard detailed the initial terms in an interview with Mirror, telling the publication that he would support Exotic's release if he, in turn, supported the Big Cat Safety Act, a mandate that prohibits ownership of big cats such as lions and leopards. "If he were to do that, it might position him in a positive way for a pardon," said Howard. "And frankly, I might be willing to go and urge at least a reduction in his sentence."

Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin
Credit: Netflix (2)

It seems Exotic is willing to do it, but not without his own terms and conditions. Exotic boasted that he would testify to the House and Senate about the Act, but that "it's time to get an attorney general down here and listen to the evidence that I have to prove I'm innocent and get me the hell out of here. And they've got my support. Other than that, they need to stay the hell out of the news with all their crap just to get their name in the paper because I just called their bluff."

Baskin responded to the ET story on social media, tweeting "so this just happened." But she did confirm she stands with her husband's offer — though she seems to have her own terms as well, wanting him to be rewarded for choosing to do the right thing.

"I wouldn't seek a reduced sentence for Joe based upon him just saying he'd help end cub handling. I think he'd say anything, but not actually do it," she said. "He'd have to actually work with authorities to bring all of his buddies to justice and work with legislators to end cub handling."

Exotic has spent two years in prison, serving a 22-year sentence for a murder-for-hire plot towards Baskin and for multiple violations of wildlife laws.

Representatives for Baskin did not immediately respond to EW's request for comment.

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