Jussie Smollett Sentenced to 150 Days in Jail for Attack Hoax

US actor Jussie Smollett has been sentenced to 150 days in jail after a jury found he had lied to police about being the victim of a hate crime.

The former Empire star, 39, was found guilty in December of five charges of felony disorderly conduct after making false reports about the hoax attack.

The sentence also includes 30 months of probation and $145,000 (£110,780) in restitution and fines.

Following the sentence, Smollet said: “I did not do it!”.

The trial stemmed from an incident three years ago, when Smollett said he was attacked by two assailants.

The actor, who is black and gay, said the attackers shouted slurs at him, shouted a Trump slogan, dumped a “chemical substance” on him and tied a noose around his neck while he was walking late at night in January 2019.

Authorities opened an investigation, but in February of that year, police charged Smollett with filing a false police report, alleging he had staged the assault.

At trial last year, a jury of six men and six women heard from brothers Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, who testified Smollett paid them to orchestrate the attack and paid them $3,500 (£2,670) to carry it out.

Smollett faced up to three years in prison for each of the five counts. The first 150 days of his probation will be sent in custody, beginning immediately.

He must also pay $120,106 in restitution to the city of Chicago and $25,000 in fines – the maximum allowable by law.

Throughout the trial, Smollet maintained that he had been the victim of a crime.

In court on Thursday, his defence team again asked that the case be thrown out or declared a mistrial, citing a previous prosecutor’s 2019 promise to drop the charges.

Prosecutors characterised the effort as “finger-pointing and scapegoating”.


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