JUSSIE Smollett’s lawyer has offered an extraordinary explanation for why the actor told cops his Nigerian attackers were white — because they were wearing pale make-up.
The Empire star’s attorney Tina Glandian claimed Smollett believed his alleged attackers were white because they were possibly wearing white makeup to disguise themselves.
Speaking on the Today show, Ms Glandian said: “He did tell police that from what he saw, he thought it was white or pale skin, that’s what he initially said.
“Obviously, you can disguise that. You can put make-up on.”
She then pointed to a 2016 YouTube video of Abel Osundairo in which he was wearing white makeup on his face to apparently dress up as the Joker.
She also says two brothers who claim they worked with the “Empire” actor to stage a racist, anti-gay attack against him are lying.
She says Smollett is a crime victim and “just wants his life back”.
He thought it was white or pale skin… obviously, you can disguise that, you can put make-up on
Jussie Smollett's lawyer Tina Glandian
Prosecutors offered little explanation when dropping the case, a move that infuriated Chicago’s mayor and police chief.
But it emerged today that the FBI was probing why all 16 criminal charges against Jussie Smollett were dropped.
And a city official says Chicago was seeking $130,000 (£99,000) from Smollett to cover the costs of the investigation into his reported beating.
The shocking 'race attack' that never was
Smollett, who is black and openly gay, told police he was attacked while walking home around 2am on January 29.
He claimed two masked men – one wearing a red MAGA-style hat – shouted racist and homophobic slurs as they beat him, put a noose around his neck, and poured bleach on him.
The star claimed they yelled: “This is MAGA country”, a reference to Donald Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ campaign slogan.
It was later claimed Smollett had directed the men — who were brothers — to buy the noose at a hardware store and the hat and masks at a store in Uptown Chicago.
Police said the pair wore gloves during the staged attack, and did punch Smollett, but the scratches and bruises on Smollett’s face were most likely self-inflicted.
Cops at the time said the attack was a publicity stunt because the actor was upset about his pay on the hit show.
US Donald Trump has even waded in and dubbed the case an “embarrassment to our nation”.
Smollett previously told cops he was jumped by two men wearing ski masks on January 29 and that he could make out they had “pale or white skin” around their eyes.
According to police, Smollett hired African-American brothers Abel and Ola Osundairo whom he knew to stage the hate crime to gain sympathy and further his career.
Yet Smollett denies this and his charges were mysteriously dropped on Tuesday even though the police insisted they had a strong case against the actor that it was a hoax.
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It has emerged that the actor did just 16 hours community service with a non-profit organisation as part of a deal.
His duties included stuffing envelopes, helping the group film its weekly broadcast and working with the music director and choir.
Jussie Smollett reportedly did two days of community service with non-profit organisation, Rainbow PUSH Coalition[/caption]
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