PETA Statement: Indictment of ‘Doc’ Antle of ‘Tiger King’

For Immediate Release:
October 9, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Richmond, Va. – Notorious wildlife exploiter “Doc” Antle—who appeared in Netflix’s Tiger King—was indicted on Thursday and charged with one felony count of wildlife trafficking, one felony count of conspiracy to traffic in wildlife, and 13 additional misdemeanor charges in Virginia.

The charges stem from trafficking in lions with the owner of the now-defunct Wilson’s Wild Animal Park, Keith Wilson, who faces similar charges (in addition to 46 counts of cruelty to animals filed against him after state officials seized more than 100 animals they found kept in squalid and inadequate enclosures, many without food or water).

Below, please find a statement from PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel of Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet, who also appeared in Tiger King:

The dominos are falling one by one—nearly every animal abuser featured in Tiger King is now in custody, out of business, or facing administrative or criminal charges. After years of working to stop “Doc” Antle’s cruel tiger-petting sessions and chimpanzee video stunts, PETA is eager to see him face the courtroom—and the consequences.

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment,” and the group opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind