Man exonerated in Malcom X murder sues New York City for $40m

by | Jul 14, 2022 | World

Lawsuit says Muhammad Aziz, who wrongfully spent 20 years in jail, suffered ‘immense and irreparable’ damage.A man who was exonerated after spending decades in prison in the United States for the 1965 murder of Black civil rights advocate Malcolm X is suing New York City for its role in his wrongful conviction.
Muhammad Aziz’s lawyers filed a lawsuit against the city in federal court on Thursday, demanding at least $40m in damages.
“Mr Aziz, a US Navy veteran who served multiple tours of duty, and the father of six young children, was only 26 years old when he was arrested for the murder of Malcolm X,” the lawsuit reads.
“He spent 20 years, during what should have been the prime of his life, locked in prison for a crime he did not commit. The damage done to Mr Aziz and his family was immense and irreparable.”
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Aziz, 84, and his codefendant Khalil Islam, who died in 2009, were exonerated in November 2021, with the judge who vacated their conviction calling it a “serious miscarriages of justice”.
At the time, then-Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr apologised for what he called “serious, unacceptable violations of law and the public trust”.
Islam’s estate also filed a similar lawsuit against New York City on Thursday.
Aziz, Islam and a third defendant, Mujahid Abdul Halim, were convicted in 1966, but historians have long cast doubt about the case. Halim, who was released from prison in 2010, confessed to the murder but maintained the innocence of the other two men.
The case was reopened in 2020 after the release of a Netflix docuseries, Who Killed Malcolm X.
Aziz sued New York state over the wrongful convictio …

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