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R Kelly prison sentencing updates: Artist sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex trafficking, racketeering

R Kelly ‘did atrocious things to children’, victim says after sentencing

R&B Singer R Kelly has been sentenced to 30 years in prison following a conviction in federal court last year on sex trafficking and racketeering charges.

Appearing in court on Wednesday, the disgraced singer remained silent as he heard from some of his accusers who gave victim impact statements recounting their experiences with the singer.

Prosecutors had called for R Kelly to receive more than 25 years behind bars in order to “protect the public” from the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer. He was convicted on nine counts last September, which included one racketeering and eight counts of Mann Act violations.

Gloria Allred, who represented the three women who testified against R Kelly, told reporters that “no one can undo the harm that has been done to these victims,” which his lawyer’s denied.

The acting associate director off Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) who announced Kelly’s sentencing meanwhile called the singer a “prolific serial predator who utilized his wealth and fame to prey on the young and vulnerable by dangling promises of fame, fortune and stardom for his own sexual gratification.”

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Journalist who covered early allegations reacts to sentence

Jim DeRogatis, the first journalist who covered R Kelly’s alleged crimes in 2000, was among those who reacted on Wednesday to his sentencing.

He told ABC’s RN Breakfast program that the R&B singer would probably not have been convicted and sentenced if he still had money and fame and was at the height of his career.

“I’m not so sure we would have seen the conviction or the sentencing today if he still had the money and fame that he had at the height of his powers through the 90s, through the 2000s,” DeRogatis said.

“He’s broken. As he sang in the last song he released to the world: I am a broke ass legend.”

The journalist added: “Justice is bought in America too frequently by money and fame and that’s what happened when he was first tried for making child pornography in 2008.”

Mr DeRogatis broke the story about the infamous video tape, which showed the singer allegedly abusing and urinating on a 14-year-old girl.

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 18:20

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Victims ‘grateful’ for 30 year sentence

R Kelly’s victims were divided in their opinion of his sentence of 30 years, but said they were “grateful” that the disgraced R&B singer was “away and will stay away”.

Speaking outside court following the verdict two women, who remained anonymous while reading their victim impact statements to the court, said they were “proud” of one another.

Kelly was handed the sentence after being convicted on charges of racketeering and sex-trafficking in September last year, Mike Bedigan reports:

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 17:20

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Opinion: R Kelly’s decades of abuse tell a story that never ends

“Wealth, power, racism and misogyny protected the R & B star, and we are a long way from dismantling the culture that enables predators and abusers”, writes fiona sturges in the opinion piece below:

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 16:50

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Opinion: For Black women like me, there is no justice and no peace

Following the conviction of R Kelly in September, Nyla Burton wrote that the 55-year-old being found guilty was a long wait for Black women like herself.

“The majority of people Kelly abused were Black women and girls, some as young as 12 years old. Because of that they were seen by many as disposable and not worthy of protection.”

“Knowing that it has taken 25 years — nearly my entire life — for Kelly to face any semblance of accountability is so deeply depressing.”

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 16:20

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Opinion: R Kelly’s prison sentence deserves the least men like him

“Something is very, very rotten in the cult of male celebrity”, writes The Independent’s Victoria Richards in the opinion piece below.

“Because it doesn’t end with the abuse. This behavior has a ripple effect that lasts decades; not just for the victims themselves, but all those who see what men like this can get away with for so long – and assume they can do the same.”

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 15:50

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What do R Kelly’s lawyers say?

R Kelly didn’t testify at his trial in September, but lawyers representing the disgraced R&B singer portrayed his accusers as “girlfriends” and “groupies” who went along with his sexual acts.

Those claims were dismissed by the court, which found the disgraced music artist guilty on multiple counts. A different team of lawyers representing Kelly had recently argued he should get no more than 10 years in prison. He was instead sentenced to 30 years on Wednesday.

His lawyers had blamed a traumatic childhood “involving severe, prolonged childhood sexual abuse, poverty, and violence” on the 55-year-old’s behavior more than two decades ago, when his crimes were said to have been committed.

Additional reporting by the Associated Press

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 15:20

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What was R Kelly sentenced for?

The disgraced R&B singer had faced a string of allegations before being found guilty in September of racketeering and the sexual exploitation of a child and sex trafficking – among other charges.

Kelly, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, sat motionless as he was convicted of those charges last year. He again remained silent during his sentencing on Wednesday.

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 14:23

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Victims ‘grateful’ for 30 year sentence

R Kelly’s victims were divided in their opinion of his sentence of 30 years, but said they were “grateful” that the disgraced R&B singer was “away and will stay away”.

Speaking outside court following the verdict two women, who remained anonymous while reading their victim impact statements to the court, said they were “proud” of one another.

Kelly was handed the sentence after being convicted on charges of racketeering and sex-trafficking in September last year, Mike Bedigan reports:

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 13:45

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Kelly to go on trial in Chicago

The disgraced singer will again face a trial which could extend his time in prison further in Chicago, where he was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008. by a jury.

Kelly will again face charges of child pornography, of luring children into sex acts, and of trying to influence the outcome of his earlier case when his trial begins on 15 August.

The Illinois city is his hometown.

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 13:00

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Opinion: For Black women like me, there is no justice and no peace

Following the conviction of R Kelly in September, Nyla Burton wrote that the 55-year-old being found guilty was a long wait for Black women like herself.

“The majority of people Kelly abused were Black women and girls, some as young as 12 years old. Because of that they were seen by many as disposable and not worthy of protection.”

“Knowing that it has taken 25 years — nearly my entire life — for Kelly to face any semblance of accountability is so deeply depressing.”

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 12:00

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