Al Sharpton Reportedly Acted As FBI Informant In Mafia Takedown

News & Views | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 04/08/2014 | 11:30 AM EDT

Legal documents reveal the political activist worked with NYPD and FBI to help bring down notorious crime family

The Rev. Al Sharpton is known as many things, but never has he been known to be an informant. But according to investigative website The Smoking Gun, Sharpton was just that.


In secret court filings and FBI memos obtained by the website, Sharpton is named as “Confidential Informant No. 7,” who allegedly taped mobsters with a bugged briefcase, helping the feds bring down members of the Genovese crime family.


Documents claim that for four years during the 1980s, Sharpton secretly assisted a joint FBI-NYPD task force known as the “Genovese squad.” But it’s how Sharpton allegedly got involved with the FBI that raises eyebrows.


According to reports, the "BEING" star became a paid informant after he was caught on tape with a drug kingpin discussing cocaine deals. The feds reportedly threatened him with charges and convinced him to “snitch” on Mafia acquaintances. Sharpton was then used as an asset to the task force because he had “established relationships with (boxing) promoter Don King, various elected officials and several powerful New York hoodlums involved in concert promotion, record distribution and talent management.”


Agents gave Sharpton a customized Hartmann briefcase he used to record conversations touching on mob hits, extortion schemes and the activities of Genovese crime boss Vincent “Chin” Gigante. However, Sharpton denies ever being an informant, though he does admit to having recorded conversations with mob figures and contacting authorities after receiving death threats.


“If you’re a victim of a threat, you’re not an informant — you’re a victim trying to protect yourself,” Sharpton told the New York Daily News. “I was never told I was an informant or I had a number or none of that,” he said. “Whether or not they used some of the other information they got during that period for other purposes, I don’t know.”


Sharpton insisted his only goal was to draw out evidence about the threats against him and called the report an effort to smear him ahead of his National Action Network convention this week, which features speeches by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and President Barack Obama. “Where is the crime?” he said. “They admit that I never did anything wrong.”

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