A black civil rights activist who took control of a neo-Nazi group has reportedly died at the age of 55.
James Stern reportedly died last month after a battle with cancer, his lawyer announced Tuesday. He made headlines earlier this year after he announced that he had persuaded Jeff Schoep, the former leader of the National Socialist Movement, to give him control of the organization, with Michigan corporate records indicating that the transition occurred in January.
Stern was reportedly able to convince Schoep to transfer presidency of the group to him, with Stern vowing to dismantle the group. However, Schoep later filed paperwork naming a different president of the organization, which prompted an ongoing civil lawsuit by Stern.
Schoep’s lawyer said in a court filing last month that his client had left the group this March, and Schoep himself has told press he has renounced racism and intends to speak out against the movement.