De Blasio defends Sharpton’s informant work

Sharpton and de Blasio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
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Bill de Blasio is sticking by Al Sharpton, after a new report detailed Sharpton's work as an F.B.I. informant for mob-related investigations in the 1980s.

"Doesn't change the relationship one bit," the mayor said, following a City Hall personnel appointment on Tuesday afternoon.

The Smoking Gun posted dozens of documents on Monday that appeared to show Sharpton served as a confidential informant for the bureau, secretly recording conversations with Mafia contacts using a briefcase recorder.

Sharpton didn't deny the report at a press conference on Tuesday morning, but said he wasn't a "rat" and that he "did what was right" in the situation. 

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Sharpton has served as a conspicuous ally of de Blasio, regularly hosting the mayor at his National Action Network headquarters in Harlem.

"I'm very proud to be his friend," de Blasio said today. "I think he has done a lot of good for the City of New York and for this country. What's obvious from what he said this very morning is that he was asked by the F.B.I. to support their efforts and he agreed to help, and that's what a citizen should do, so I have the exact same positive view I had of him before."

The mayor is scheduled to attend an annual conference for the National Action Network on Wednesday.