Report: 2 men to be cleared in 1965 killing of Malcolm X

National

In this Feb. 13, 1963 file photo, Nation of Islam leader Malcolm X speaks to the press in New York as Muslims were picketing through the Times Square area. A Smithsonian Channel series, “The Lost Tapes: Malcolm X,” examining the life of civil right leader Malcolm X, follows the advocate’s changing philosophy using his own words as a Nation of Islam surrogate to a figure seeking to build coalitions during the tumultuous 1960s civil rights era. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Two men convicted in the assassination of Malcolm X are set to be cleared after more than half a century, with prosecutors now saying authorities withheld evidence in the civil rights leader’s killing, according to a news report Wednesday.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that Muhammad Aziz and the late Khalil Islam, who spent decades in prison for the crime, were being exonerated after a nearly two-year investigation by their lawyers and the Manhattan district attorney’s office. A court date is expected Thursday.

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

Malcolm X was gunned down as he began a speech in Harlem’s Audubon Ballroom on Harlem’s Audubon Ballroom on Feb. 21, 1965.

The two men were then known as Norman 3X Butler and Thomas 15X Johnson. Aziz, 83, was released in 1985. Islam was released two years later and died in 2009.

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