The brothers allegedly paid by actor Jussie Smollett to fake a hate crime attack have finally released a statement on the matter.
Lawyers for Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo said the brothers “have tremendous regret over their involvement in this situation. They understand how it has impacted people across the nation, particularly minority communities and especially those who have been victims of hate crimes themselves.”
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Smollett posted bail earlier this week after Chicago police charged him with a felony for filing a false police report. The star of the Fox show Empire initially claimed that unknown attackers had beaten him, doused him with bleach and tied a rope around his neck as part of a racist, homophobic hate crime. He further alleged that the attack was part of a coordinated effort to intimidate and bash him which also included sending threatening letters to the Empire offices.
The backlash against Smollett has grown since a number of irregularities in his account of the attack have attracted questions about his story, and since the Osundario brothers provided evidence to police that Smollett paid them to stage the attack. Fox has dropped Smollett from the remaining episodes of Empire this season, as rumors about that the show’s producers would like to recast Smollett’s role.