R&B star convicted in all respects: NPR

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In this illustration from a video stream, the prosecution presents its final argument in the federal lawsuit against singer R. Kelly on September 22 in New York City.

Elizabeth Williams / AP


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Elizabeth Williams / AP


In this illustration from a video stream, the prosecution presents its final argument in the federal lawsuit against singer R. Kelly on September 22 in New York City.

Elizabeth Williams / AP

After more than 25 years of charges and a trial in New York federal court that lasted seven weeks, R&B singer R. Kelly was convicted of child sexual exploitation, bribery, racketeering and sex trafficking involving five victims. Kelly faces a 10-year life sentence.

Kelly remained motionless as the foreman returned the jury’s verdict to Judge Ann Donnelly.

Fourteen alleged underlying acts were associated with the racketeering charge. The jury found that the government had proven 12 of these acts, which resulted in five victims: singer Aaliyah as well as women named Stephanie, Jerhonda Pace, Jane and Faith. Three acts associated with an alleged victim named Sonja have not been proven. (Most of the alleged victims used their first names or pseudonyms.) The government only needed proof of two of the racketeering acts for a guilty charge.

Federal prosecutors for the Eastern District of New York successfully proved to a jury of seven men and five women that Kelly had been the head of a criminal enterprise whose purpose was to attract girls, boys and men. women towards the R&B singer for his sexual gratification.

In addition to awaiting conviction in this New York case, Kelly will face a second federal trial on child pornography and obstruction of justice charges in Illinois. Some of the charges relate to a 2008 Chicago child pornography trial in which he was acquitted of all charges.

Additionally, Kelly faces pending criminal charges both in Cook County, Ill., Where he was indicted by the state prosecutor in February 2019 with aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four victims. (including three minors) and in Minnesota, where Kelly was indicted in August 2019 for engaging in prostitution with a minor.

Sentencing in New York is scheduled for May 4.


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