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Crime R. Kelly trial: R. Kelly convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking by a federal jury in New York

01:05  28 september  2021
01:05  28 september  2021 Source:   cnn.com

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Along with sex trafficking , Kelly was also found guilty of racketeering - a charge normally used against organized crime associations. During the federal trial , the court also heard how he had illegally obtained paperwork to marry underage singer Aaliyah, who died in a plane accident in August 2001 after marrying Kelly at age 15. "No matter how long it takes, the long arm of the law will catch up with you," said Assistant US prosecutor Elizabeth Geddes at a news conference outside the court after the verdict was read.

NEW YORK , Sept 27 (Reuters) - R . Kelly was convicted by a federal jury on Monday of racketeering in his sex trafficking trial , where prosecutors accused the R &B singer of exploiting his stardom over a quarter-century to lure women and underage girls into his orbit for sex . Prosecutors tried to portray Kelly as a predator who over a quarter century used his fame and charisma to lure women and underage girls into his sphere, and then subject his victims to violent physical and sexual abuse, some of which he recorded. Defense lawyers countered that Kelly was generous with those

Jurors have found R&B singer R. Kelly guilty of racketeering, including acts of bribery and sexual exploitation of a child, along with separate charges of sex trafficking.

In this courtroom sketch, R. Kelly, center, sits with his defense attorneys Thomas Farinella, top, and Nicole Blank Becker during the first day of his defense in his sex trafficking case, Monday, Sept. 20, 2021, in New York. © Elizabeth Williams/AP In this courtroom sketch, R. Kelly, center, sits with his defense attorneys Thomas Farinella, top, and Nicole Blank Becker during the first day of his defense in his sex trafficking case, Monday, Sept. 20, 2021, in New York.

In this federal case in the Eastern District of New York, Kelly faced a total of nine counts -- one count of racketeering, with 14 underlying acts that included sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping, bribery and sex trafficking charges, and also eight additional counts of violations of the Mann Act, a sex trafficking law.

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A jury has found R &B superstar R Kelly guilty on racketeering and sex trafficking charges after a trial where the prosecution portrayed him as a ruthless predator who preyed upon young Black girls and women. The panel of seven men and five women had begun deliberating the charges on Friday afternoon after prosecutors It explored claims that an entourage of supporters protected Kelly and silenced his victims for decades. Months after the release of the film, Kelly was arrested in July 2019 on federal charges of racketeering and violating the Mann Act, which prohibits the transportation of

The singer R . Kelly , who for years dominated the world of R &B music, was found guilty on Monday of being the ringleader of a decades-long scheme to recruit women and underage girls for sex . After nine hours of deliberations, the jury in the singer’s criminal trial in federal court in Brooklyn convicted him of racketeering and eight violations of an anti- sex trafficking law, after beginning its deliberations Mr. Kelly once evaded criminal punishment in 2008 when he was acquitted on 14 counts in a highly publicized child pornography case that loomed over the New York trial in the minds of many observers.

Kelly was found guilty of nine counts -- one count of racketeering and eight counts of violating the Mann Act. Of the 14 underlying acts for the racketeering count, he needed to be found guilty of at least two to be convicted of that count. Jurors found prosecutors had proven all but two of the 14 underlying racketeering acts.

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"Today's guilty verdict forever brands R. Kelly as a predator, who used his fame and fortune to prey on the young, the vulnerable and the voiceless for his own sexual gratification," said Jacquelyn Kasulis, acting US attorney from the Eastern District of New York.

R. Kelly is "a predator who used his inner circle to ensnare underage girls and young men and women for decades, in a sordid web of sex abuse, exploitation and humiliation," Kasulis added.

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R . Kelly has been convicted of racketeering by a federal jury in Brooklyn, New York , according to the Eastern District of New York which posted the information on its official Twitter handle. The verdict is expected to be read soon. Kelly has been on trial in New York for one count of racketeering , with 14 underlying acts that included sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping, bribery, and sex trafficking charges. He was also charged with eight additional counts of violations of the Mann Act, a sex trafficking law.

NEW YORK (AP) — R . Kelly , the R &B superstar known for his anthem “I Believe I Can Fly,” was convicted Monday in a sex trafficking trial after decades of avoiding criminal responsibility for numerous allegations of misconduct with young women and children. A jury of seven men and five women found Kelly guilty of racketeering on their second day of deliberations. The charges were based on an argument that the entourage of managers and aides who helped the singer meet girls — and keep them obedient and quiet — amounted to a criminal enterprise.

She said the victims were brave for coming forward and telling their stories.

"To the victims in this case, your voices were heard and justice was finally served," Kasulis said.

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represented three of the six victims who testified at trial, said Kelly is the worst predator she has ever pursued.

"First, he used the power of his celebrity to recruit vulnerable underage girls for the purpose of sexually abusing them. These were not May-October relationships, which is what his defense attorney wanted the jury to believe -- these were crimes against children and some adults," Allred said.

She said the verdict was also a message to other celebrities who prey on others.

Kelly did not have any reaction to the verdict when it was read in court and, according to his attorney, he was not expecting this verdict.

Attorney Deveraux Cannick said outside of court the government "cherry-picked" evidence to support its narrative.

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R . Kelly was convicted by a federal jury in New York on Monday of racketeering conspiracy alleging he headed a criminal enterprise that employed agents, bodyguards and others to lure girls and young women to satisfy his sexual desires. In addition to the main count of racketeering , the jury found Kelly guilty on all eight counts of violating the Mann Act, which prohibits travel over state lines for illegal sex . Kelly , one of the biggest music stars Chicago has ever produced, faces anywhere from 10 years to life in prison when he’s sentenced on May 4, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn.

( NEW YORK ) — The R &B superstar R . Kelly was convicted Monday in a sex trafficking trial after decades of avoiding criminal responsibility for numerous allegations of misconduct with young women and children. A jury of seven men and five women found Kelly guilty of racketeering on their Kelly , born Robert Sylvester Kelly , has been jailed without bail since in 2019. The trial was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic and Kelly ’s last-minute shakeup of his legal team. When it finally started on Aug. 18, prosecutors painted the 54-year-old singer as a pampered man-child and control freak.

"You didn't get to see what we saw in terms of the discovery. You didn't get to see all the inconsistencies," Cannick said. "We said in our summation that the government cherry-picked their version that they thought would support the continuation of the narrative."

Cannick continued, "Why would he expect this verdict given all the inconsistencies that we saw?"

Kelly could face decades in prison

The jury, made up of seven men and five women, began deliberating Friday afternoon.

In all, Kelly could face decades in prison at sentencing, which is scheduled for May 4.

The verdict comes 13 years after Kelly, whose full name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, was acquitted of child pornography charges at an Illinois state trial.

An attorney for Kelly said they are considering filing an appeal and are disappointed in the verdict.

Trial began August 18

Fifty prosecution and defense witnesses took the stand during the five-week trial, including victims who were identified as "Jane Does" in Kelly's indictments. There were 45 prosecution witnesses.

Jane Doe 1 was the singer Aaliyah, who died in 2001.

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Jurors heard from multiple witnesses who were present at her marriage to Kelly on August 31, 1994, when he was 27 and she was 15. Prosecutors showed copies of the couple's marriage license application, which listed Aaliyah's age as 18 at the time of their wedding, as well as their marriage license and marriage certification.

Kelly's former tour manager, Demetrius Smith, testified reluctantly that he bribed a worker at a welfare office in the Chicago area to create a welfare ID for Aaliyah.

"I made her (the welfare office worker) an offer and she took the money," Smith testified. "I gave her $500."

While the ID did not list Aaliyah's date of birth, an Illinois official testified September 15 that, generally, a person has to be at least 18 to obtain that particular type of ID.

Nathan Edmond, a minister who married the two, spoke publicly for the first time about the marriage while testifying September 1 said he met the couple the day he married them.

"I didn't think it was anybody special. I didn't understand it at all," Edmond testified.

Jurors also heard from a woman who identified herself only as Stephanie, who said she met Kelly at an event in Chicago in 1999 when she was 17, and that he eventually invited her to his studio.

"I remember him asking me my age," Stephanie testified. "When I said I was 17, he said it was fine."

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Stephanie testified that Kelly sexually abused her when she was 17, and recorded them having sex. He paid for her travel to Florida to meet him on her 18th birthday and she stopped speaking with him shortly after the trip. She described fearing his angry outbursts, saying he would yell at her in public places.

A former radio intern who identified herself as Sonja testified September 9 that Kelly invited her to travel to Chicago to interview him at his studio in 2003 when she was 21 and that once she arrived, an employee put her in a room that Sonja quickly realized was "locked from the outside." She said she was kept in the room for several days, occasionally let out to go to the bathroom and shower.

"The door was locked. I wanted to get out," Sonja testified.

Sonja testified she lost consciousness after eating her first meal in days and saw Kelly adjusting his pants when she woke up. She testified that she believed he sexually assaulted her when she was unconscious.

"I was sexually assaulted," Sonja testified. "There was something in me that wasn't wanted."

Kelly's legal problems are not over

Kelly still has legal battles after this trial. In the Northern District of Illinois, he faces more federal charges including child pornography and obstruction charges. He also faces criminal charges in Minnesota, for two counts of engaging in prostitution with a minor, and Illinois state charges for aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges and denies any wrongdoing.

The 13-count indictment released in July 2019 in the Northern District of Illinois accused Kelly of videotaping himself having sex with at least four girls younger than 18 beginning in 1998. A few years later, after Kelly learned that some of those videos were missing from his "collection," he and others began paying "hundreds of thousands of dollars" to several people to recover them, the indictment says.

Also in 2019, a grand jury in Cook County, Illinois, indicted Kelly on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four alleged victims, three of whom were listed as younger than 17.

That indictment was followed a few months later by another one from a Cook County grand jury on 11 counts ranging from aggravated criminal sexual assault and criminal sexual assault to aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

In August 2019, the Hennepin County Attorney's Office in Minnesota announced Kelly was charged with two counts of prostitution with a person under 18. According to the criminal complaint, a woman said the incident happened in 2001, when she was 17.

Jimmy Kimmel Mocks Bill Cosby for Defending Convicted Sex Offender R. Kelly .
R. Kelly was convicted of sex trafficking and racketeering in a New York court on Monday and will be sentenced next May.Cosby faced his own fall from grace in 2018, when he was convicted of three felony counts of aggravated indecent assault. However, Cosby was released from prison in June this year, after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court vacated his conviction.

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