Russell Brand — SENTENCED for iPhone Smash

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Russell Brand will NOT go to jail for smashing a paparazzo”s iPhone in New Orleans a few months ago … after cutting a deal with prosecutors early this morning.

We broke the story … the New Orleans District Attorney charged Brand with misdemeanor criminal damage for throwing the phone through a glass window during a heated confrontation back in March.

Brand”s attorney plead NOT GUILTY on the actor”s behalf this morning — but the two sides worked out a deal in which the case will be dismissed if Brand pays $500 in court fees and performs 20 hours of community service by August 31.

It”s a good deal for Brand … who was facing up to 6 months in jail if convicted.

Brand”s attorney says the actor plans to satisfy his community service by working with people battling addiction.