Nigerian Brothers Arrested In Connection With Jussie Smollett Attack
The two men arrested have been identified as Olabinjo “Ola” Osundairo…
and Abimbola “Abel” Osundairo…
according to The Blast.
The brothers’ attorney Gloria Schmidt confirms that they know Jussie from work on “Empire,” and worked out with him at their gym—but deny any involvement in the alleged attack on the actor.
Jussie may be called to identify the two men in a lineup.
This story is still developing…
Chicago police have two men in custody in relation to the attack on Jussie Smollett.
According to the Associated Press, the men have been identified as Nigerian brothers, and they’re considered suspects in the attack.
The two were picked up by cops at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Wednesday after returning from Nigeria. On Thursday the police served a search warrant at their place. CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielimi says at least one of the brothers worked on Empire, but he doesn’t know in what capacity.
After Smollett’s ABC News interview on Thursday detailing his attack, reports started surfacing that the whole incident might have been staged. But as of 8:40 a.m. on Friday, Chicago police say this is unconfirmed. Guglielimi says police Superintendent Eddie Johnson has reached out to at least one Chicago news outlet saying investigators have no evidence supporting reports that Jussie’s attack was a hoax. Guglielimi says Johnson said the supposed police “sources are uninformed and inaccurate.”
At one point, people even started saying Jussie staged the attack because his Jamal character was about to be written off of Empire. However, 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment released a joint statement saying:
“The idea that Jussie Smollett has been, or would be, written off of ‘Empire’ is patently ridiculous. He remains a core player on this very successful series and we continue to stand behind him.”