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Oklahoma’s ‘Tiger King’ claims his music has been stolen, files for lawsuit

He has filed for what his lawyers call a seven-figure lawsuit.


Oklahoma’s "Tiger King" said his music has been stolen.

He has filed for what his lawyers call a seven-figure lawsuit. Joseph Maldonado said he owns the music, regardless of who was actually singing.

Joe Exotic said after he was sent to jail, his former musical collaborator stole his songs, re-recorded them and even sold the rights to a music label. The lawsuit said Vince Johnson broke copyright law and broke a confidentiality agreement.

The Tiger King’s attorney said the two men worked together to write and record the music. Much of it, like the song "I Saw A Tiger," was showcased in the Netflix documentary, but the lawyer said Johnson signed an agreement with Maldonado not to disclose his involvement.

"The Milli Vanilli of it all-- which we address in our complaint-- who sang what part in what track is not the issue. It's the fact that those were owned by Joe Exotic. And so once Joe's in jail and you've got Vince and everyone else saying he didn't really sing all that. Well, that's a breach of confidentiality agreement," said John Phillips, attorney for Joe Exotic.

Record label BMG is also named in the lawsuit, as are some other smaller labels. Phillips said it will probably be at least a year before the lawsuit would go in front of a jury if it gets that far.

Much sooner for Joe Exotic are oral arguments in an appeal of his recent re-sentencing. He’s also requested a new trial, but that motion is still pending.

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