TOM HAYS, Related Press
NEW YORK (AP) — R&B star R. Kelly faces a quarter-century or extra in jail when he’s sentenced Wednesday in a federal intercourse trafficking case in New York.
A jury convicted Kelly, 55, of racketeering and different prices final yr in a trial that was hailed as a landmark second within the #MeToo motion.
The outrage over Kelly’s sexual harassment of younger girls and kids was fueled partly by the extensively seen documentary sequence Surviving R. Kelly, which featured accusers who questioned if their tales had beforehand been ignored as a result of they have been black girls.
U.S. District Choose Ann Donnelly is ready to ship the decision in federal court docket in Brooklyn after listening to statements from the victims and presumably Kelly himself.
Prosecutors are looking for a minimal 25-year sentence, whereas the protection says a sentence of 10 years or much less is all he deserves.
Kelly’s attorneys argued in court docket paperwork that he ought to get a break partly as a result of he “survived a traumatic childhood of abusive, extended childhood sexual abuse, poverty and abuse.”
They added: “His victimization continued into maturity, when, because of his lack of literacy, the defendant was repeatedly scammed and financially abused, usually by the folks he paid for his protection.”
A jury convicted the creator of the hit “I Consider I Can Fly” after listening to about how he used his surroundings of managers and assistants up to now ladies and preserve them in line. The prosecutor’s workplace referred to as this operation legal.
A number of accusers testified that Kelly subjected them to perverted and sadistic whims after they have been underage.
Kelly, born Robert Sylvester Kelly, used his “fame, cash and recognition” to systematically “prey on kids and younger girls for his personal sexual gratification,” prosecutors wrote in their very own assertion earlier this month.
The accusers claimed they have been ordered to signal non-disclosure varieties and have been subjected to threats and punishments, corresponding to extreme spanking, in the event that they violated what one referred to as “Rob’s guidelines”.
Some stated they believed that the movies he fabricated from their intercourse can be used towards them in the event that they uncovered what was occurring.
There have been testimonies that Kelly contaminated a number of accusers with herpes with out revealing he had an STD, coerced a teen into becoming a member of him for intercourse with a unadorned lady who got here out from underneath a boxing ring in his storage, and filmed an embarrassing video of 1 sufferer exhibiting her smearing Faeces on his face as punishment for breaking his guidelines.
Proof was additionally offered of a fraudulent marriage scheme designed to guard Kelly after he feared he had impregnated the exceptional R&B Aaliyah in 1994 when she was solely 15 years previous. Witnesses stated they married in matching tracksuits utilizing a license that falsely listed her age as 18; he was 27 on the time.
Aaliyah labored with Kelly, who wrote and produced her 1994 debut album Age Ain’t Nothing However A Quantity. She died in a aircraft crash in 2001 on the age of twenty-two.
An earlier protection memo stated prosecutors’ case for a harsher sentence was overstated by the false allegation that Kelly was concerned in bribing a authorities official to facilitate an unlawful marriage.
Kelly’s attorneys additionally stated it will be mistaken to argue that he ought to get extra time as a result of he sexually abused certainly one of his victims, referred to in court docket as “Jane”, after her mother and father innocently trusted him to assist her together with her musical profession.
“The tape exhibits that Jane’s mother and father compelled Jane to mislead the defendant about her age after which pushed her to seduce him,” the papers stated.
Kelly has been in jail with out bail since 2019. He’s nonetheless going through prices of possession of kid pornography and obstruction of justice in Chicago, the place a trial is because of start in August. fifteen.
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