The Rev. Al Sharpton is facing a $1.75 million lawsuit after an Arizona trucker claims the civil rights activist swindled him out of $16,000 cash.
Early last year, Reggie Anders Sr. sought Sharpton’s help in a discrimination suit against communications company Verizon. The company was a trucking client of Anders’, and he accused them of discrimination and breach of contract in a federal suit that was dismissed back in 2014, the New York Post reports.
The Arizona man claims Sharpton agreed to help him with the discrimination suit by publicizing the matter with the national media as well as on his weekly radio show. Sharpton also reportedly agreed to set up a mediation meeting between Anders and top officials at Verizon. In exchange for his help, Anders paid the civil rights leader $16,000 in cold, hard cash.
“He wanted cash only,” Anders told the New York Post. “He didn’t say why.”
A week later, Anders learned Sharpton had been receiving thousands of dollars in “protection money” from companies looking to avoid bad press from the civil rights leader and his National Action Network, the New York Post reports. One of those companies happened to be Verizon.
“I had no idea that he was in bed with Verizon,” Anders told the publication, which ran an exposé on Sharpton and his trickery in August 2015.
Sharpton was reportedly threatening big name companies like GM and Verizon with bad publicity if they didn’t donate money to him or his National Action Network.
Anders told the Post Sharpton went berserk when he called to ask about the allegations and subsequent inaction on his discrimination case.
“He said people write stuff about him all the time,” Anders said. “Then for a year-and-a-half he strung us along.”
According to the Post, the Arizona trucker is seeking $1.75 million in damages from Sharpton and Verizon for “conspiring” against him.
“He’s a crook, he’s a fraud, and that’s all he is,” Anders said of the civil rights leader. “He didn’t do anything he promised. Absolutely nothing.”
Just last year, Sharpton dodged a $20 billion lawsuit filed by the National Association of African-American Owned Media accusing him and cable company Comcast of racial discrimination.