Former Empire star Jussie Smollett has been indicted by a Cook County, Illinois, grand jury for orchestrating and making false reports to the police, claiming that he was a victim of a hate crime on January 29, 2019.
The actor claimed that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack near his Chicago apartment. Police investigated the incident as a hate crime only to later reveal that Smollett had orchestrated the incident by paying two Nigerian brothers, Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo to stage the incident just for publicity.
Jussie Smollett faced charges for allegedly orchestrating the attack in the past, however those charges were dropped. Since then, the special prosecutors’ office says they have sufficient factual evidence leading to a disagreement in dropping the charges.
“Based on the recommendation of the OSP (Office of the Special Prosecutor), a Cook County grand jury returned a six-count indictment charging Jussie Smollett with making four separate false reports to Chicago Police Department officers related to his false claims that he was the victim of a hate crime, knowing that he was not the victim of a crime,” Said Dan K. Webb, the special prosecutor assigned in August to investigate how local prosecutors handled the actor’s case.
Tina Glandian, an attorney for Jussie Smollett in a statement said the special prosecutor “has not found any evidence of wrongdoing whatsoever related to the dismissal of the charges against Mr. Smollett.”
“Rather, the charges were appropriately dismissed the first time because they were not supported by the evidence,” Glandian said. “The attempt to re-prosecute Mr. Smollett one year later on the eve of the Cook County State’s Attorney election is clearly all about politics not justice.”
An attorney for the two Nigerian brothers who are being alleged of been paid to carry out the hate crime, in a ststement said the brothers are well aware of the new charges.
“As stated before, they are fully committed to the public knowing the truth about what occurred on January 29, 2019,” she said in a statement. “The Osundairo brothers will continue to cooperate with that process and they thank the Special Prosecutor’s office for their tireless work in seeing that justice was administered.”
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