Sex trafficking trial: R. Kelly found guilty, risks life imprisonment - SALIENT TIMES ONLINE

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Monday, 27 September 2021

Sex trafficking trial: R. Kelly found guilty, risks life imprisonment

By Our Correspondent




R. Kelly, the embattled American R&B singer, has finally been convicted by a federal jury in his sex trafficking trial.

 
The musician was on Monday found guilty of being the ringleader of a decades-long racketeering and sex trafficking scheme that exploited black women and children.


R. Kelly has been in a protracted legal battle over sexual assault and child pornography allegations.


In a six-week trial at the Brooklyn federal court, nine women and two men — eleven accusers in total — opened up on what they described as the “sexual humiliation and violence” they experienced at the singer’s hands.

 
Prosecutors also accused Kelly of using his fame and wealth to lure victims with promises to help their musical careers.


Several of his alleged victims testified that they were underage when he sexually abused them.


Following two days of deliberation, the jury found Kelly guilty on all the charges he was facing.

 
The singer was also found guilty of violating the Mann Act, a law that bans interstate sex trafficking.


It is understood that Kelly will be due to be sentenced on May 4, 2020.


According to BBC, and Reuters, the singer could spend the rest of his life behind bars.


The assault allegations against Kelly had received wide exposure after the 2019 Lifetime documentary ‘Surviving R Kelly’, which explored claims that an entourage of supporters protected Kelly and silenced his victims for decades.

 
Kelly had been arrested by federal authorities in Chicago back in 2019 and transferred to New York in June 2021.


The 54-year-old, best known for the 1996 smash hit ‘I Believe I Can Fly’, has consistently denied any wrongdoing.