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Jussie Smollett files counterclaim against Chicago for malicious prosecution

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FILE – In this March 26, 2019, file photo, actor Jussie Smollett smiles and waves to supporters before leaving Cook County Court after his charges were dropped in Chicago. An Illinois judge seems close to appointing a special prosecutor to look into why state prosecutors abruptly dropped charges against Smollett accusing him of staging a racist, anti-gay attack against himself. A hearing Friday, Aug. 23 will be one of the first opportunities for Judge Michael Toomin to name someone since his surprise ruling in June that a special prosecutor was warranted. Among the options available to a special prosecutor would be to restore charges against Smollett. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty, File)

CHICAGO (AP) — Former “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett says his $10,000 payment after the close of a criminal case should prevent Chicago from seeking reimbursement for a police investigation of his claim that he was a victim of a racist and homophobic attack.

Smollett’s attorneys filed a response Tuesday to Chicago’s lawsuit in federal court. They also filed a counterclaim against the city, saying Smollett was the victim of a malicious prosecution that caused humiliation and extreme distress.

Smollett told police he was beaten in January by two men who looped a noose around his neck. Chicago police said it was staged, and Smollett was charged with making a false report.

But prosecutors in March dropped the case. Smollett maintains his innocence but agreed to let authorities keep a $10,000 bail.

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