American actor, Jussie Smollet, has been found guilty for staging an attack on himself and making a false report to the Chicago police that he was a victim of a hate crime.
The “Empire” actor on Thursday was convicted on five of six charges he staged an anti-gay, racist attack on himself in January 2019 and lied to two different police officers about it.
The actor was acquitted on one account of disorderly conduct for lying to a separate officer on February 14.
His convictions are listed as class 4 felonies and could face up to three years in prison.
The “Empire” actor, who is black and gay, claimed two men beat him up, yelled racist and homophobic words, dumbed an unknown chemical substance on him and put a rope around his neck while he was walking in the street in 2019.
However, the police and prosecutors alleged that Smollet paid two Nigerian brothers Abel and Ola Osundaro, $3,500 to help him stage the attack. Both brothers testified during the trial that Smollet asked them to carry out the fake attack on him.
Smollet also took the stand, telling the Jurors that he and Abel were involved in a sexual relationship before the alleged attack and that the communications with the brothers the night of the attack were about scheduling a personal training session.
Abel, however, has denied having a sexual relationship with Smollet.
Smollet also repeatedly denied ever staging the attack, telling jurors that there was a hoax, as he stated that on the night of the attack he had gone out to buy eggs.
One of the jury members stated doubts that there was no way Smollet could have gone out to buy eggs at 2 am, on one of the coldest nights of the year and that the Osundairo brothers would not have been able to ambush him unless they knew his exact location.
Smollet’s attorneys denied the allegations, arguing that he is a real victim in the streetervile attack.