‘Empire’ actor, Jussie Smollett, has pleaded not guilty in a Chicago court to new charges that he falsely reported to police that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic assault on a city street.

The judge instructed that he return to court on the 12th of April.

In an indictment returned by a grand jury last Thursday, Smollett, who is black, openly gay and plays a gay musician on Fox’s hip-hop drama, was charged with 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct alleging he gave false accounts of an attack on him to police investigators.

Smollett was charged in February after he told police he was attacked in January by masked supporters of United States (US) President Donald Trump who beat him, slung a noose round his neck and poured a liquid chemical on him while shouting racist and homophobic slurs.