After Jussie Smollett‘s attorneys accused Abimbola Osundairo of being the actor’s scorned ex-lover and drug dealer, they made the Nigerian’s brother, Olabinjo Osundairo, out to be a violent homophobe.
These are the reasons, claim the defense team, that the Osundairos ambushed Smollett in what was described as a hate crime one frigid night in Chicago almost three years ago.
On Thursday, the defense told jurors that the reason Olabinjo, specifically, attacked Smollett was because he “hated who he was.”
During his testimony, however, Olabinjo told the court how he respects the LGBTQIA+ community. He said he used to work as a bouncer at a gay club and always treated the clientele well.
The jury was then shown a photo of Olabinjo dressed up as a Trojan warrior at a Pride parade in 2015, where he said he spent the day “handing out condoms and flexing.”
He told the court that, contrary to what Smollett’s team had suggested, he was never a violent homophobe. He said he had set his intentions on “getting the truth out” during the actor’s trial.
And that truth, according to both Olabinjo and his brother, is that Smollett – who they met through the television show, Empire – orchestrated a plan in which he paid the men thousands of dollars to stage what he later told police was a racist and homophobic physical assault.
The brothers have both said that they did not anticipate authorities would become involved and only ever wanted to help their “friend,” who had helped them with their careers and also picked up the tab whenever they’d go out together.
During Abimbola’s earlier cross-examination, the defense introduced the topics of drugs and a possible sexual relationship.
Abimbola had previously admitted to supplying Smollett with weed, cocaine and ecstasy while they both worked on Empire; however, he denied to the court that he ever sold them to the actor.
“I’m not a drug dealer,” he said. “I don’t sell.”
Abimbola was then asked when he and the actor began dating, prompting him to fire back, “We were never dating.”
He told the court that he once went to a bathhouse with Smollett in Boystown. When the defense asked if gay pornography was playing inside the spa, Abimbola replied, “I don’t recall.”
Smollett’s attorneys fired back questions like: “You don’t recall seeing gay pornography? … You don’t remember masturbating with him?”
“No,” he responded.
When asked if there was “sexual tension” between the two, Abimbola said he “didn’t know” if there was any on Smollett’s part.