Tariq El-Shabazz to announce run for DA

Philadelphia District Attorney R. Seth Williams, left, with Tariq El-Shabazz, right.

Tariq El-Shabazz, who resigned last week from his position as first assistant district attorney, is to announce his candidacy for district attorney at a news conference Monday at a Chestnut Hill restaurant, according to a news release.

"As district attorney, El-Shabazz wants to give the entire city confidence in understanding that criminal prosecution will be determined by the rule of law -- irrespective of someone's race, country of origin, sexual orientation, or religion," the release said.

El-Shabazz was hired as District Attorney Seth Williams' top deputy in October at a salary of $165,576. On Feb. 10, Williams announced that he would not seek reelection due to a number of financial and ethical mistakes he made during his tenure.

El-Shabazz, 52, will be the sixth Democrat to enter the race and the one with the strongest ties to Williams.

Before joining Williams' staff, El-Shabazz was a prominent defense lawyer who represented such notorious criminals as drug kingpin Kaboni Savage.

From 1988 to 1993, El-Shabazz served as an assistant district attorney in Philadelphia.

Last week, when he was asked about $190,712 in tax lien judgments that have been filed against him in Common Pleas Court, El-Shabazz said, "I have a settlement agreement regarding my tax liens. I am up to date."

El-Shabazz will hold his news conference to announce his campaign at 11 a.m. at the Philly Platinum Grill Restaurant. Guests are to include Pastor Alyn Waller of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church and Samuel Staten Jr., business manager at Laborers' union Local 332, according to the news release. 

Staff writer Chris Brennan contributed to this article.