Civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump on Tuesday announced the intent to file a lawsuit against several city, state and federal law-enforcement agencies for concealing information about the assassination of Malcolm X.
Crump announced the lawsuit on behalf of Malcolm X’s family, including his daughters Qubilah Shabazz and Ilyasah Shabazz, who joined him during a press conference at the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center in New York City. The wrongful death lawsuit will be against the New York City Police Department, the city and state of New York, the FBI, CIA and more.
The petitioners will seek $100 million in the lawsuit.
In 2022, the Manhattan Supreme Court exonerated Muhammad A. Aziz and Khalil Islam from their convictions in the assassination of Malcolm X. Both men spent more than 20 years in prison and Islam died before the conviction was overturned. An investigation by the Manhattan district attorney’s office found that the FBI and NYPD withheld evidence that would have resulted in both men being acquitted, The New York Times reports.
“It gives Malcolm’s daughters the opportunity to seek legal redress, finally, based on the government’s admission that they concealed evidence involving the assassination of Malcolm X,” Crump said. “The truth of what happened and who was involved has always been critical.”
The city and state settled lawsuits against them for the wrongful convictions of Aziz and Islam for more than $30 million. Crump asked rhetorically what the compensation for Malcolm X’s daughters, who he said have suffered the most from his death, should be.
Malcolm X was assassinated on Feb. 21, 1965, while delivering a speech at the Audubon Ballroom in Manhattan.
Mujahid Abdul Halim, then a follower of the Nation of Islam, was also convicted in the killing and his conviction remains. Halim – – formerly known as Talmadge Hayer – – repeatedly professed the innocence of Aziz and Islam while admitting to his own role in the shooting. He was released on parole in 2010.
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