$40 million dollars demanded from New York by the wrongfully accused of killing Malcolm X; “Netflix” series reopened the case

Malcolm X (right) and Martin Luther King Jr (left) were assassinated in 1965 and 1968.

Photo: Genius MLKX by Nicole Cappello (21st Century Fox) / Courtesy

Muhammad Aziz, who spent 20 years in prison after being wrongly convicted of the 1965 murder of legendary activist Malcolm X, filed a $40 million federal lawsuit against New York City on Thursday. claiming that rampant corruption in the police department and local government led to his unjust sentence.

Aziz, now 84 years old, was exonerated of the murder last November after his attorneys and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office determined that the FBI and the NYPD had withheld critical evidence which would likely have led to his acquittal at trial.

At the time of the announcement in the fall of 2021, Aziz was already free, and Cy Vance – then the Manhattan District Attorney – apologized and acknowledged the “seriousness of the error”in an interview with New York Times.

The conviction of Aziz and his co-defendant Khalil Islam, who died in 2009, were the product of a “flagrant official misconduct” by the NYPD and the department’s notorious McCarthy-era intelligence squad, known as “BOSSI,” the suit alleges.

“As a result of his wrongful conviction and imprisonment, Mr. Aziz he spent 20 years in prison for a crime he did not commit and more than 55 years living with hardship and indignity that accompany being unfairly labeled as convicted murderer of one of history’s greatest civil rights leaders.” his attorney, David Shanies, wrote in the filing.

Malcolm X was assassinated on February 21, 1965, at the Audubon Ballroom in washington heights (NYC). The Times reported last November that the review found that prosecutors, the FBI and the NYPD withheld evidence which would likely have led to an acquittal.

The Manhattan District Attorney opened a case review early 2020after the series netflix documentary “Who Killed Malcolm X?” raised serious questions about the culpability of Aziz and Islam, known at the time as “Norman 3X Butler” and “Thomas 15X Johnson.” “The Innocence Project” a nonprofit organization, had already been working with attorney David Shanies and the DA’s office to exonerate them, he said. NBCNews.

Mujahid Halim, paroled in 2010, admitted to taking part in the murder but maintained that the other two did not. Islam was paroled in 1987 and died in 2009; and Aziz, who has been paroled since 1985, is the one who is now suing.

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$40 million dollars demanded from New York by the wrongfully accused of killing Malcolm X; “Netflix” series reopened the case