Crime

Chicago police release two Nigerians detained over attack on Jussie Smollet, as they investigate claims that the Empire star staged the assault

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The Police had on Wednesday apprehended the two Nigerians who purportedly attacked Jussie Smollett. The two  were picked up by police at Chicago O’Hare Airport as they arrived back in America after visiting family in Nigeria to be questioned over the January 29 attack involving the star.

Their family say they went to Africa on January 29, hours after the Smollett attack. One of the suspects, Ola appeared on Empire in 2015 and both brothers have had minor roles on Chicago PD.

Smollett follows their joint Instagram account and, according to their lawyer, sometimes goes to the gym with them.

Findings have also uncovered photographs of one of the brothers inside the gym in Smollett’s apartment building in June. The gym is private to residents of the luxury condominium building.

However, the star has been accused by anonymous police sources cited by local networks of staging the attack.

The sources accused Smollett of orchestrating the assault because he was being written out of the show and wanted to drum up publicity to save his role – a claim that has been strenuously denied by the show and uncorroborated by the police department.

Smollett had told the police that he was attacked by two assailants whose facial features he could not make out but that it was a racist, homophobic ambush during which they called him ‘Empire f****t n****r’ and shouted: ‘This is MAGA country!’

Meanwhile, the two men have been released without charge, according to police announcement late on Friday.

They are reportedly being released due to ‘new evidence’.

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