Singer R. Kelly Sentenced To 30 Years In The Slammer For Sex Trafficking

(Photo: Reuters)

(Yahoo) R. Kelly will go to prison for 30 years for sex trafficking, sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping and other sex-related crimes. In September, a jury found Kelly guilty on all nine charges: one count of racketeering and eight counts of violating the Mann Act. The singer, whose full name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, was first accused of having sex with underage girls in the ’90s but escaped punishment for almost 30 years.

Judge Ann M. Donnelly handed down the sentence on Wednesday after the court heard statements from Kelly’s victims, but, surprisingly, not from the multiplatinum singer. The judge told Kelly “the public has to be protected from behaviors like this,” according to the New York Times.


“These crimes were calculated and carefully planned and regularly executed for almost 25 years,” Judge Donnelly added. “You taught them that love is enslavement and violence.”

Federal prosecutors asked for a sentence of more than 25 years for Kelly, who faced life behind bars. The singer’s lawyers were seeking the minimum of 10 years and laid out their arguments for leniency citing his “highly chaotic” childhood home where he was sexually abused.


R. Kelly arrives for a child support hearing at a Cook County courthouse in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. March 6, 2019. (Photo: Reuters)

“Mr. Kelly rejects that’s he’s this monster,” said his defense lawyer Jennifer Bonjean. Kelly declined to make a statement due to pending litigation.

As seven women gave victim impact statements in court, the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer rarely looked up from the table where he sat.

“With every addition of a new victim, you grew in wickedness,” one woman told Kelly, per NYT. “You used your fame and power to groom and coach underage boys and girls for your own sexual gratification.”

Kelly reportedly glanced up at her once before quickly looking down. “I pray that God reaches your soul,” she declared.

Many of the women were emotional, according to the Chicago Tribune.

During the six-week trial, a jury heard graphic testimony from 11 accusers — nine women and two men — who described sexual and psychological abuse at the hands of the “Ignition” singer. The case hinged on the accounts of six victims, five of whom testified. The sixth, singer Aaliyah, whom Kelly illegally wed when she was 15, died in a plane crash in 2001.

Kelly, with the help of his inner circle, used his fame and status to prey on children and young women for his own sexual gratification. The government pushed for a sentence “in excess” of 25 years because his crimes fell within the following four categories: enticement of children; the sexual exploitation of children through the production of child pornography; forced labor; and exposing others to incurable communicable disease (genital herpes) through unprotected sexual intercourse as Kelly didn’t disclose his status.

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