Grand jury charges for Jussie Smollett

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US actor Jussie Smollett has been charged by a grand jury in Chicago on 16 counts, after being accused of falsely reported to police that he had been the victim of a hate crime.

He is alleged to have paid two brothers to stage the attack on January 29th and officials also believe that he sent a racist and homophobic letter to himself at a Fox studio beforehand.

He was previously charged with making a false statement to police for which he was granted $100,000 bail.

On Thursday, a grand jury returned 16 counts of disorderly conduct against him.

According to the BBC, Mr Smollett denies all the charges and will appear in court on March 16th.

Police say the actor staged the attack in an attempt to further his career.

Last month however, he was suspended from the TV show ‘Empire’ which he starred in.