R Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison on nine federal charges, including racketeering and sex trafficking.
Today, disgraced R&B star, R. Kelly, has been sentenced to 30 years in prison and ordered to pay a $100,000 fine after being convicted for nine charges in 2021, including one charge of racketeering and eight charges of sex trafficking.
Kelly had been accused of sexual, physical and emotional abuse, using his stardom to lure fans and aspiring artists, many underage. He was also accused on giving some of the victims herpes after not disclosing he had the infection. Prosecutors had requested that Kelly be sentenced to more than 25 years in prison.
The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Judge Ann Donnelly after a five-week trial in federal court in Brooklyn, New York. Donnelly stated the case was less about sex and more about Kelly’s controlling behaviour.
“Although sex was certainly a weapon that you used, this is not a case about sex”, Donnelly told Kelly. “It’s a case about violence, cruelty and control.”
She went on to consider Kelly’s own childhood experiences as a explanation, but not an excuse, for his actions.
“It may explain, at least in part, what led to your behavior…It most surely is not an excuse.”
While rumours had circulated for decades that Kelly was having relationships with underaged girls, including the late R&B superstar Aaliyah who he married after she was thought to be pregnant, the allegations gained steam after the release of the docuseries Surviving R. Kelly where multiple victims shared their stories of being abused and controlled by Kelly. In a subsequent interview with Gayle King, Kelly passionately denied the allegations.
According to TMZ, Kelly must still face a federal case in Illinois and a state trial in Minnesota.