The sources say the brothers claimed they were paid by Smollett. The brothers’ attorney said both knew Smollett.
Fox 32 News has also learned that police found a receipt for the rope found on Smollett’s neck in the brothers’ possession showing they had purchased it from an Ace Hardware in Chicago.
The two brothers were released by the police once they agreed to cooperate with police, after detectives said they would charge them with battery.
Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi confirmed detectives have reached out to Smollett’s attorneys and expressed that they need to talk with Smollett.
Police are now investigating whether Smollett made up the story but police are still calling him a victim at this point.
Smollett told authorities he was attacked early January 29 by two men who were “yelling out racial and homophobic slurs.”
He said one attacker put a rope around his neck and poured an unknown chemical substance on him.
Smollett gave his first detailed account of what he says was a hate crime against him, and the aftermath, in an interview with “Good Morning America” that aired Thursday.
During the interview he expressed frustration at not being believed.
“It feels like if I had said it was a Muslim or a Mexican or someone black I feel like the doubters would have supported me a lot much more,” Smollett said.
“And that says a lot about the place where we are as a country right now.”
CNN’s attempts to reach both Smollett’s representative and attorney Saturday were unsuccessful.
The brothers, who were arrested Wednesday, were released without charges Friday after Chicago police cited the discovery of “new evidence.”
The sources told CNN that the two men are now cooperating fully with law enforcement.