R Kelly sentencing – live: R&B singer on suicide watch after getting 30 years in prison for sex trafficking

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 utilised his wealth and fame to prey on the young and vulnerable by dangling promises of fame, fortune and stardom for his own sexual gratification.”


‘R Kelly used his fame, fortune and enablers to prey on the young’, lawyer says

Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York who announced R Kelly’s 30-year-prison term on Wednesday along with Steve K. Francis, Acting Executive Associate Director, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) said that the singer “used his fame, fortune and enablers to prey on the young.”

Read his full statement while announcing the sentence here:

“R. Kelly used his fame, fortune and enablers to prey on the young, the vulnerable and the voiceless for his own sexual gratification, while many turned a blind eye.

“Through his actions, Kelly exhibited a callous disregard for the devastation his crimes had on his victims and has shown no remorse for his conduct. With today’s sentence he has finally and appropriately been held accountable for his decades of abuse, exploitation and degradation of teenagers and other vulnerable young people. We hope that today’s sentence brings some measure of comfort and closure to the victims, including those who bravely testified at trial, and serves as long-overdue recognition that their voices deserve to be heard and their lives matter.”

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 22:20


Victim said singer kept her as ‘sex slave’

Lizzette Martinez, who gave a victim impact statement during the sentencing hearing on Wednesday in which she said she was R Kelly’s “sex slave”, said she hoped R Kelly would get a harsher sentence.

“I personally don’t think it’s enough but I’m pleased with it,” she told reporters after the 55-year-old whose sentenced to 30 years.

Other women who testified during the trial and sentencing hearing have not made their names public.

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 21:20


Lawyer: R Kelly placed on suicide watch after being sentenced for sex trafficking

However, his attorney believes the disgraced R&B singer is not suicidal and was fearful of being put on suicide watch.

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 21:02


Why did R Kelly get a longer sentence than Ghislaine Maxwell?

Disgraced R&B singer R Kelly was sentenced to thirty years in prison on Wednesday following his conviction for sex trafficking and racketeering.

In response to this news, many compared his sentencing to that of Jeffrey Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell, who received twenty years in jail for her sex trafficking conviction.

One Twitter user wrote: “Can someone please explain to me how R Kelly received a prison sentence 10 years longer than Ghislaine Maxwell?”

Holly Bancroft investigates:

Oliver O’Connell1 July 2022 20:20


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 faces 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 19:20


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 programme 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 broke. 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


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


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


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

Following the conviction of R Kelly in September, Nylah 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


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

“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 behaviour 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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