Smollett’s Alleged Attackers Sue His Attorneys for Defamation
The case of the alleged attack against Jussie Smollett continues to get even more strange. After an outpouring of love and support following an allegedly racist and homophobic attack on Jussie Smollett in Chicago, in which his face was scratched and a noose was tied around his neck, the media turned on Smollett after the Chicago police department found evidence that the attack had been staged and Smollett had been in on it the whole time.
Despite Smollett’s initial claim that his attackers had been white men wearing MAGA hats, the Chicago police department found video surveillance footage of the two alleged attackers purchasing the items used in the attack. That happened just hours before the attack happened, and instead of white men, the video showed two black men who turned out to be Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo, two brothers who both had connections to Smollett through the show Empire, on which Smollett stars. Further condemning Smollett and his alleged conspirators was the evidence the Chicago police department says they found showing that Smollett and the Osundairo brothers were in contact with each other shortly before and shortly after the alleged attack.
What sealed the deal for the investigation was getting the Osundairo brothers into custody, where they confessed to conspiring with Smollett to stage the attack.
Smollett was charged with filing a false report, but he and his attorneys maintain he was innocent and the attack was real. The prosecutors quickly dropped all charges against him, even as they insisted they could prove the attack had been staged. That’s common when the two parties agree to a settlement in which the defendant agrees to pay a certain amount without admitting to any fault, but that didn’t happen in this case, leaving many people scratching their heads as to what could have prompted the prosecutors to drop all charges.
Meanwhile, Smollett has been giving interviews to the press doubling down on his version of the story, in which the Osundairo brothers attacked him.
Well, the situation just got even more interesting following a defamation lawsuit filed by the Osundairo brothers against Smollett’s attorneys: Mark Geragos, Tina Glandian, and the Geragos & Geragos Law Firm.
In a recently released joint statement, the two brothers said they can no longer sit back and watch as Smollett and his attorneys continue to defame them to the press by insisting they carried out a violently racist and homophobic attack against the celebrity. The complaint alleges Smollett’s attorneys are continuing to knowingly do damage to the reputations and careers of the Osundairo brothers by claiming they carried out this horrific attack.
The attorneys have responded by releasing a statement claiming the defamation lawsuit is completely unfounded, and that the Osundairo brothers have only filed it as a way to maintain the attention of the media so they can use that coverage to further their own careers.
Suing Smollett’s attorneys, rather than Smollett himself, is an interesting choice, especially since the law grants broad protections to lawyers when it comes to the things they say on behalf of their clients. If a client tells their attorney they’re innocent and the attorney successfully argues that version of events, there’s nothing in the law to make the attorney’s actions illegal. In fact, many defense attorneys never even ask their clients about their innocence because they believe it makes it easier to build a case if they don’t know the truth. Because of that practice, there’s a good chance Smollett’s attorneys firmly believed in their client’s innocence, and since successfully suing for defamation requires proving the alleged defamer knew what they were saying was false, the Osundairo brothers will have a very hard time doing so in court.
You can read the Complaint here.
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