CHICAGO — Two brothers who said they helped Jussie Smollett stage a racist and homophobic attack against himself are suing the "Empire" actor's attorneys for defamation.
A lawyer for Olabinjo Osundairo and Abimbola Osundairo filed the federal lawsuit Tuesday in Chicago on behalf of the brothers. It names Mark Geragos and his law firm as defendants.
The suit alleges that Geragos and his firm continued to say publicly in widely reported statements that the brothers "led a criminally homophobic, racist and violent attack against Mr. Smollett," even though they knew that wasn't true.
Read the civil complaint filed below:
Osundairo Suit (1) by on Scribd
Police allege that Smollett paid the brothers to help him stage a Jan. 29 attack in which he said two masked men beat him, hurled racist and homophobic slurs at him, doused him with some sort of chemical substance and looped a rope around his neck.
Prosecutors have said Smollett and Abel Osundairo, 25, became friends in 2017 and that Abel Osundairo was a stand-in for a character on "Empire." Court documents said Olabinjo Osundairo, 27, also appeared as an extra in the show.
The two brothers were initially drawn into the investigation after police released grainy images of two "persons of interest" in the area the night of the attack.
Within days, police said the brothers were considered suspects in the attack. But then, the two men were abruptly released and were not charged with a crime.
They testified before a grand jury, and soon after Smollett was charged with filing a false report of the attack.
Schmidt said she was baffled by the decision to drop all charges against Smollett.
Smollett maintains that the attack wasn't staged.