Actor Jussie Smollett charged with filing false police report

Getty Images

Getty Images

Smollett now is facing further questioning by the Chicago Police Department after two persons of interest (brothers from Nigeria, one of whom worked as a personal trainer on a music video of Smollett's) were released on Friday after additional interviews, and without being charged. Cops were extremely suspicious when Jussie took them out to the area where he said he was attacked and pointed to an obscure camera saying how happy he was that the attack was on video. "Smollett's attorneys will keep an active dialogue going with Chicago police on his behalf". If it's determined that Smollett lied to the feds about a racist letter he received on the set of Empire, that could also come back to haunt him.

Smollett's agent and public relations managers also did not return calls from Reuters.

Chicago police say the charge of filing a false police report carries a maximum sentence of up to three years in prison.

Smollett's lawyers have said the actor was angered and felt "victimized" by reports that he may have played a role in staging the attack.

United States detectives are investigating a tip that on the night gay black actor Jussie Smollett reported being beaten in a hate-motivated attack, he was in a lift with two brothers who were later arrested in the probe. A police spokesman said the two are no longer considered suspects and that investigators have new evidence to consider as a result of questioning them.

The two brothers, Ola and Abel Osundairo, were arrested by the police at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport after they returned from Nigeria only to be released without charges on February 15.

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Smollett also was later charged with false impersonation, driving under the influence and driving without a license. He later pleaded no contest to a reduced charge and took an alcohol education and treatment program.

The size of the tab is anyone's guess, but given how much time the police have invested, the cost could be huge.

As for reports that Smollett knew one or both of the Nigerian brothers, his lawyers said, "It is impossible to believe that this person could have played a role in the crime against Jussie or would falsely claim Jussie's complicity". In Smollett's case, "I can imagine that this would be easily into the hundreds of thousands of dollars".

According to the Cook County State Attorney's office, Smollett is due to appear in court for a bond hearing at 1:30 p.m. CT on Thursday.

Said Foxx spokeswoman Tandra Simonton: "Out of an abundance of caution, the decision to recuse herself was made to address potential questions of impartiality based upon familiarity with potential witnesses in the case".

When the relative expressed concerns about the case, Foxx "facilitated a connection" between the family member and detectives, according to a statement.

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