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Jussie Smollett Once Pleaded No Contest to Providing False Info to Authorities

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MAY 01: Actor/singer Jussie Smollett performs onstage during the 20th Anniversary Taste for a Cure fundraiser benefitting UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on May 1, 2015 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Jonsson Cancer Center …
Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Jonsson Cancer Center Foundation
JOSHUA CAPLAN

Empire actor Jussie Smollett, who faces accusations of staging a racist and homophobic attack against himself last month, once pleaded no contest to providing false information to law enforcement.

A Los Angeles City Attorney’s office spokesman confirmed to NBC News 10 Tuesday that Smollett pleaded no contest to driving under the influence and driving without a license, along with giving false information to authorities in 2007. He was sentenced to probation for two years and given a choice to pay a fine or serve prison time in connection to the case, NBC News 10 reports.

The report comes as a Chicago police spokesman said Abimbola “Abel” and Olabinjo “Ola” Osundairo, the two Nigerian brothers who were arrested and later released from custody in connection with the attack reported by Smollett, have met with police and prosecutors at the courthouse.

Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said the meeting took place Tuesday in Chicago. He also said that officers have determined a tip that the two men may have been in an elevator with Smollett last month was not credible. He said video evidence helped them make that determination.

The development follows reports that FBI and U.S. Postal Inspection Service officials are investigating whether Smollett played a role in sending a threatening letter to himself at Empire’s Chicago studio ahead of his alleged staged attack, according to ABC News.

ABC News reports that the letter, which was delivered mailed to the studio on January 22, is undergoing an FBI crime lab analysis.

Smollett reported last month that he was physically attacked by two men who yelled homophobic and racial slurs. He said they also yelled he was in “MAGA Country,” an apparent reference to President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan.

Last week, police announced that the “investigation had shifted” following interviews with the brothers and their release from custody without charges. Police have requested another interview with Smollett.

Meanwhile, attorneys for Smollett said Monday there are no plans for him to meet with Chicago detectives for a followup interview about his reported assault. Anne Kavanagh is a spokeswoman for Smollett’s lawyers. She says that his lawyers “will keep an active dialogue with Chicago police on his behalf.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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