The Rev. Al Sharpton didn’t waste any time breaking his silence after the news of him being a paid FBI informant broke wide open yesterday, April 7.
Instead of offering any sort of rebuttal and apology for his decision to do what street inhabitants refer to as “snitching,” Sharpton defending his stance and stated that it the report was “nothing new,” seeing he had detailed it in his 1996 book Go and Tell Pharaoh.
Via the Associated Press:
In my own mind I was not an informant,” Sharpton said. “I was cooperating with an investigation.”
Sharpton called a news conference at his Harlem headquarters to talk about a story posted Monday on the website The Smoking Gun that said he had recorded conversations with mobsters.
The website said Sharpton was recruited by a police-FBI task force to record conversations with Mafia figures using electronic equipment hidden in a briefcase. It said Sharpton was known as Confidential Informant No. 7 in court papers.
He read a passage from the book Tuesday and said, “Nothing new about that story.”
Sharpton acknowledged using a recording device in a briefcase but said he did nothing wrong.
“In this situation I did what was right,” he said.
The Smoking Gun posted dozens of pages of documents that it said showed Sharpton’s dealings with mob figures. Sharpton said his lawyers would review the documents.
Defiantly, Sharpton closed his press conference letting it be known that any street code of ethics did not apply to him then or now. “I’m not a mobster. I’m a preacher, he stated.