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Report: Smollett Didn't Pay $3,500 for Fake Attack

Seems the 'Empire' actor only paid for physical and health training
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 23, 2019 12:22 PM CST
This image released by Fox shows Jussie Smollett, left, and Terrence Howard in a scene from the "The Depth of Grief" episode of "Empire," which originally aired on Oct. 31.   (Chuck Hodes/Fox via AP)

(Newser) – Jussie Smollett may not have paid the Nigerian brothers to attack him after all. Unidentified sources "connected to the case" tell TMZ that the $3,500 check to Abel and Ola Osundairo was only to get the Empire actor pumped up for a music video. Smollett said he needed abs like Ola's and wrote on the check's memo line, "5 weeks training nutrition plan." This contradicts a police statement (widely reported by outlets like CBS Chicago) that the check was to pay for a falsified attack against Smollett. Seems Abel and Ola told the grand jury the check was for training, and also said they didn't send Smollett a threatening letter about a week before the apparent attack. (Empire's producers have made a move to avoid "further disruption.")

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