Malcolm X Family Files $100M Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against NYPD, FBI and Other Government Agencies

Malcolm X Family Files $100M Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against NYPD, FBI and Other Government Agencies


On Tuesday, 58 years after Malcolm X's passing, his family filed a $100 million wrongful death lawsuit against the NYPD, state of New York and federal agencies for allegedly concealing evidence in connection with his 1965 assassination. They announced this development on social media platforms such as Facebook.

On Tuesday afternoon, Attorney Ben Crump held a news conference alongside Malcolm X's daughters Qubilah and Ilyasah Shabazz to declare the prosecution of those involved in the conspiracy to assassinate him and conceal their involvement.

The Assassination

The assassination of Malcolm X was a shocking event for the American Muslim community, especially those associated with the Nation of Islam. A prominent Black nationalist and anti-capitalist who served as national spokesperson for black civil rights movements across America was shot dead on stage by three men at New York City's Audubon Ballroom in February 1965.

Over the years, conspiracy theories have swirled around Malcolm X's murder. Although Muhammad Aziz and Khalil Islam were cleared of his death, a review of the case revealed crucial evidence was withheld from prosecution.

On the 58th anniversary of Malcolm X's assassination, his family announced plans to sue the NYPD and various government agencies for $100 million. According to attorney Benjamin Crump and two of Malcolm X's daughters, this suit will allege that authorities deliberately concealed evidence pertaining to his killing after it occurred.

Crump stated he would "vigorously pursue collection of depositions from remaining individuals with firsthand knowledge" of the 58 year-old case.

His announcement comes after his team discovered a letter written by Ray Wood, an undercover NYPD officer who worked with Malcolm X's security detail. Read aloud by Reggie Wood - an ally and administrator of Malcolm X's estate - this letter claimed that both police departments and FBI conspired to have X killed.

This letter resonates with theories explored in the 2020 Netflix documentary Who Killed Malcom X?

In his documentary, activist Abdur-Rahman Muhammad explores several conspiracy theories surrounding Malcolm X's assassination, such as possible federal or state law enforcement involvement. Additionally, he interviews people involved in the investigation such as a former investigator and the father of one of those convicted for his murder.

On Tuesday, the New York City Police Department issued a statement in which it indicated it will collaborate with the Manhattan District Attorney's office during their review of the case. Additionally, it said all records pertinent to this investigation had been provided to the DA and that it remains committed to providing information as requested.

The Defendants

On Tuesday, on the 58th anniversary of Malcolm X's assassination, his lawyer announced plans to file a $100M lawsuit against NYPD, CIA and other government agencies over their alleged role in an organized conspiracy to murder him. Benjamin Crump claimed these organizations had fraudulently withheld evidence which would have cleared two men convicted in his murder but exonerated last year.

Plaintiffs attorneys are also seeking compensation for the surviving daughters of Malcolm X who they claim have been injured by his shooting, particularly Malikah Shabazz (two when her dad was shot), who they claim was harmed in the process. Mrs Shabazz filed notices of claims before filing suit, asserting her father "was killed for his views and principles."

Her siblings were spread across America, living in foster homes or with their parents. Attallah had the advantage of attending an elite private school and law school in Manhattan; however, she has not remained professionally active since her brother's murder.

His sisters Ella and Malikah both moved to Boston after their father's passing and went on to pursue careers as drug dealers. Malikah, born in Michigan but raised in New York City, attended a prestigious private school there before attending law school there.

Attallah and Ella Shabazz both have children of their own, as well as Malikah from Malcolm's first marriage. Though she has not worked professionally, she runs a joint venture with her sister Ilyasah.

In 1965, Malcolm X was the leader of the Nation of Islam and an outspoken advocate for racial segregation. Prior to his assassination, he had made several public declarations outlining his views and disdain for mainstream civil rights efforts.

On the night of his assassination in New York, Malcolm X had recently announced his split from the Nation of Islam. Three armed men stormed into Audubon Ballroom in Upper Manhattan and opened fire on him on stage, leaving him with 21 bullet wounds.

Two men - Muhammad Aziz and Khalil Islam - were convicted of the murder and served decades in prison before their exoneration in 2021. However, this case rested on alibis, eyewitness testimony and physical evidence which historians have long disputed. A third individual, Mujahid Abdul Halim, confessed to the killing but maintained that Aziz and Islam weren't involved.

The Lawsuit

On Tuesday, February 21, 2019, the family of late civil rights leader Malcolm X revealed their intentions to sue New York Police Department and other government agencies for $100 million in wrongful death damages. This announcement was made during a news conference attended by two of his daughters.

Ilyasah Shabazz, who was two years old at the time of her father's assassination, believes US officials intentionally concealed evidence that they conspired and executed on their plan to assassinate him. She declared that these actions were criminal and should be punished accordingly.

Crump announced to reporters his firm plans to file a lawsuit against the NYPD and several other agencies including the city and state of New York, FBI, and CIA. This wrongful death suit will include convictions that these entities concealed, withheld or suppressed evidence related to Malcolm X's alleged murder.

Mr. Crump asserted that the agency's actions were part of a pattern of corruption and malfeasance by government officials, noting former FBI director J Edgar Hoover's involvement in the assassination of Malcolm X as an example.

He noted that New York and the city of Manhattan have paid $26 million and $10 million, respectively, to the families of two wrongfully convicted men in connection with the assassination. Muhammad Aziz and Khalil Islam were exonerated in 2021 and received settlements; however, Crump noted this amount is "only a drop in the bucket" for his slain activist's family.

At a press conference held Tuesday, February 21 at Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Education Center in Manhattan's Washington Heights, family attorney Benjamin Crump announced they plan to file a $100 million wrongful death lawsuit against the NYPD, FBI, and other government agencies for their alleged role in his assassination. This announcement followed months of investigation by government authorities into who may have committed this horrific act.

Three months after New York and the city of Manhattan agreed to pay $26 million and $10 million respectively in wrongful death settlements for the exoneration of two men convicted and jailed in 1965 for assassinating Malcolm X, federal agents and NYPD withheld information that could have cleared both men.


The family of late civil rights leader Malcolm X has filed a $100M wrongful death lawsuit against NYPD, FBI and other government agencies over their handling of his 1965 assassination. The suit alleges officials of conspiring to kill Malcolm X and covering it up through an incomplete investigation.

On Tuesday, Malcolm X's two youngest daughters -- Qubilah Shabazz and Ilyasah Shabazz -- announced the lawsuit 58 years to the day after their father died. Supported by Benjamin Crump, a Florida-based attorney, they stated they were filing the suit to seek "restitution" for all of the trauma their father endured.

Ilyasah, who was only two when her father was assassinated, informed reporters she plans to sue the New York City Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation and CIA over his assassination. Additionally, she claimed these government entities fraudulently concealed evidence showing they "conspired and executed their plan" to assassinate her father, as reported by The Associated Press.

She asserted that the prosecutors in charge of the case failed to consider all evidence uncovered during an investigation into the murder, including a police report identifying two men as potential suspects. She labeled prosecution of Aziz and Islam a "witch hunt," violating their right to due process.

Despite all legal action, Aziz and Islam remain innocent. Last year, prosecutors overturned Aziz's and Islam's murder convictions. In October, the city of New York agreed to pay $26 million in settlement of a lawsuit filed by Aziz and his estate regarding their rights in New York City.

Furthermore, the state of New York agreed to pay an additional $10 million as part of a settlement with Aziz and Islam resulting from their wrongful death lawsuit.

In 1963, Malcolm X made a speech that would alter the course of history. He declared his intention to bring the fight for black rights to an international audience by taking Black people's grievances against America to the United Nations. Additionally, he suggested that America's civil rights movement should include both Black communities and White progressives who could work together towards creating a more just society. His charismatic oratory gained wider recognition after television broadcasts about Nation of Islam in New York gained wider exposure.

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