Jussie Smollett Files Countersuit Against Chicago for Malicious Prosecution

Additionally, they filed a counterclaim, also obtained by PEOPLE, arguing that the actor was the victim of a "malicious prosecution" that caused him to suffer "substantial economic damages as well as reputational harm, humiliation, mental anguish and extreme emotional distress in an amount according to proof at trial".

Chicago nonetheless sought triple damages in its April 11 civil lawsuit to recoup overtime costs.

They later said they believed Smollett staged the attack to boost his acting career.

The counterclaims were filed against Chicago, the brothers and several police officers and employees.

The actor was charged with 16 felony counts, but a prosecutor dropped the charges saying Smollett forfeited his bail money and completed community service.

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At the start of this year, police in Chicago announced they were investigating an attack on actor Jussie Smollett, who'd been punched in the face, had an "unknown chemical substance" poured on him and a rope wrapped around his neck.

According to the counterclaim, Smollett's attorneys say that Chicago police wanted him prosecuted based on the Osundairo brothers' "false, self-serving, and unreliable statements in order to close the investigation into the attack on Mr. Smollett".

His attorneys filed a response on Tuesday to Chicago's lawsuit in federal court.

He also said Chicago could not recover investigative costs because it already accepted his US$10,000 "payment in full" in connection with the dismissal of the criminal case.

The "Empire" star's counterclaim argues "Counterclaim-Defendant Johnson's demonstrably false public statements regarding the purported key evidence against Mr. Smollett demonstrate malice and a lack of good faith in instituting criminal proceedings against Mr. Smollett".

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Smollett insisted he was a victim of a racist and homophobic attack, but the city later determined that the alleged attack was nothing more than a hoax.

Smollett also claims that the police facilitated the false statements, and failed to follow protocol when they allowed Ola to be in the room when they questioned Abel. Jussie still claims his attacker was a white male.

But the media has established that Smollett and the brothers were linked, as Smollett was one of the main characters of "Empire" and the Osundairo brothers played extras.

The brothers' attorneys have acknowledged they took part in a hoax, but said they have apologized for it and only did so because Smollett paid them.

"The City stands by its original complaint and will continue to pursue this litigation", Bill McCaffrey, a spokesman for the Chicago Department of Law, told Law&Crime in a statement.

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