Charges against Jussie Smollett ‘dropped’

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Reuters

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The Empire actor maintains he was attacked by two unknown individuals

Prosecutors have dropped all charges against US actor Jussie Smollett for allegedly staging a racist and homophobic attack, his lawyers say.

The Empire actor attended a court hearing in Chicago on Tuesday, where a judge reportedly dismissed the case.

Mr Smollett pleaded not guilty this month to 16 counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly lying to police.

His attorneys maintained on Tuesday that the actor was attacked by two unknown individuals.

Smollett attorneys Tina Glandian and Patricia Brown Holmes said in a statement that their client’s record “has been wiped clean.”

“He was a victim who was villified and made to appear as a perpetrator as a result of false and inappropriate remarks made to the public causing an inappropriate rush to judgement,” the lawyers said.

“Jussie and many others were hurt by these unfair and unwarranted actions. The entire situation is a reminder that there should never be an attempt to prove a case in the court of public opinion.”

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s office said that after reviewing the case, they “believe this outcome is a just disposition and appropriate resolution”, CBS News reported.

Mr Smollett, 36, was accused of paying two brothers to stage an attack on 29 January, with Chicago police saying he did so because he was “dissatisfied with his salary”.

Authorities also claimed he sent a racist and homophobic letter to himself at a Fox studio beforehand.

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