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Jussie Smollett found guilty on five of six disorderly conduct charges

Jurors on Thursday found actor Jussie Smollett guilty on five of six disorderly conduct charges for allegedly lying to police and staging a hate crime attack against him in 2019. File Photo by Tannen Maury/EPA-EFE
Jurors on Thursday found actor Jussie Smollett guilty on five of six disorderly conduct charges for allegedly lying to police and staging a hate crime attack against him in 2019. File Photo by Tannen Maury/EPA-EFE

Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Chicago jurors found Empire actor Jussie Smollett guilty on five of six counts of disorderly conduct Thursday.

Smollett was charged with making false reports to police that he was the victim of a hate crime he orchestrated in 2019.

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Smollett faces up to three years in prison but is likely to receive a sentence of probation as he has no prior criminal record.

After hearing from 13 witnesses over multiple days of testimony the panel of six men and six women deliberated for more than 9 hours Wednesday and into Thursday before reaching a verdict.

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Prosecutors argued that Smollett paid brothers Abimbola Osundairo and Olabinjo Osundairo to attack him and yell "this is MAGA country" and racial slurs at him in an attempt to gain public sympathy and settle a dispute about his security.

Abimbola Osundairo, a bodybuilder, testified that he was "good friends" with Smollett and procured drugs for him, gave him fitness advice and drove around with him as part of the actor's creative process in hopes that Smollett would help him advance his own acting career.

Abimbola Osundairo also said Smollett gave him a check for $3,500, which he said he believed was for the attack as well as a nutrition plan.

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Smollett, who testified in his own defense, denied any involvement in planning the attack, calling the brothers "liars" and saying that police altered his statements about the event to make it appear he said at least one of his attackers was White.

He also testified that he had a sexual relationship with Abimbola Osundairo and did not trust the bodybuilder's brother.

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