2 men are cleared in the 1965 assassination of Malcolm X.

NEW YORK – Two men convicted of the assassination of Malcolm X are released after more than half a century, and prosecutors now say authorities have denied evidence of the murder of the civil rights director, according to Wednesday’s news report.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that Muhammad Aziz and the late Khalil Islam, who spent decades in prison for the crime, were released after nearly two years of investigation by their attorneys and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. The trial is expected on Thursday.

“These men did not get the right they deserved,” District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. told the newspaper.

Vance tweeted that his office, the Innocence Project and the law firm will move to release the sentences, with more information coming on Thursday.

One of the most controversial and convincing figures of the civil rights era, Malcolm X rose to fame as the spokesman for the Nation of Islam, proclaiming the message of the Black Muslim Organization at the time: racial separatism as a path to self-realization. He is notoriously urging blacks to demand civil rights “in any way necessary.”

He was shot down when he began speaking at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem on February 21, 1965.

Aziz, Islam, and a third man, Mujahid Abdul Halim – known at the time of the murder as Talmadge Hayer and later Thomas Hagan – were convicted of murder in March 1966 and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Hagan said he was one of three gunmen who shot Malcolm X, but he testified that Aziz or Islam were not involved. The duo, then known as Norman 3X Butler and Thomas 15X Johnson, claimed to be innocent all along.

“Thomas 15 Johnson and Norman 3X Butler had nothing to do with this crime,” Hagan said in a 1977 statement.

Hagan was released on parole in 2010. He identified two other men as servicemen, but no one else was ever arrested.

According to The New York Times, the re-investigation found that the FBI had documents pointing to other suspects, and a surviving witness supported the alibi offered by Aziz after the trial – that he was home due to a leg injury. shooting time.

The review also found that prosecutors knew but did not disclose that covert police were in the ballroom when the fire broke out, and police knew someone had called the New York Daily News earlier that day saying Malcolm X would be killed.

“This was not mere negligence,” Azor and Islamic lawyer Deborah Francois told the Times. “This was the result of an extreme and gross misconduct.”

Aziz was released in 1985. He is now 83 years old.

Islam was liberated two years later and died in 2009.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office admitted publicly considering reopening the case after Netflix released last year a series of documentaries, “Who Killed Malcom X?”

.

Leave a Comment