R. Kelly found guilty; faces life in prison

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R. Kelly will not fly anymore. Times up for newly convicted child rapist and disgraced multi-award winning R&B artist Robert Sylvester Kelly, more commonly known as R. Kelly, who was convicted and found guilty of charges including sexual exploitation of a child, bribery, racketeering, and sex trafficking involving five victims, after more than 25 years of accusations, including video evidence of him sexually assaulting a 14-year-old, for which he was acquitted in 2008, and a federal court trial in New York that lasted seven weeks.

Kelly faces a possible sentence of 10 years to life in prison.

Kelly was stoic as the verdict was announced and he was found guilty of nine counts which includes one count of racketeering and eight counts of violating the Mann Act, a law which bars the transport of people across state lines “for any immoral purpose.”

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 12 out of 14 underlying racketeering acts.

Those acts involved five victims: the singer Aaliyah as well as women named Stephanie, Jerhonda Pace, Jane, and Faith (Most alleged victims went by their first names or pseudonyms.) 

The jury, made up of seven men and five women, began deliberating on Friday afternoon. Kelly could face decades in prison at sentencing, which is scheduled for May 4. An attorney for Kelly said they are considering filing an appeal and are disappointed by the verdict.

The child rapist has paid out millions in civil suits over the past 2 and ½ decades for raping children, impregnating some, forcing them to have abortions, and infecting them with herpes. The true number of his victims is not only dizzying but also too vast to even estimate. The only people who truly know are the victims themselves, Kelly, and Susan E. Loggans, who negotiated payouts with Kelly’s lawyers in exchange for her clients’ silence and ⅓ of each of their payouts.

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Kelly has silenced many of his accusers by paying them cash settlements in exchange for their signatures on nondisclosure agreements, a tactic used by wealthy and powerful predators such as Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby. Many of those agreements were crafted by Susan E. Loggans aka “Lawyer #1”.

In addition to the rape and other sexual assaults, according to victim testimony, he also beat and tortured his victims both physically and emotionally.  Nearly a dozen victims of R. Kelly took the stand in a New York courtroom to provide harrowing details of the abuse and mistreatment they suffered at the hands of the famous singer.

Many of the 11 women and men, some of whom cannot be publicly identified, describe being raped by R. Kelly when they were underage. They described him as controlling, angry and violent and added that he required them to call him “daddy”.

Not only is he awaiting sentencing in this New York case, Kelly will also face a second federal trial on charges of child pornography and obstruction of justice in Illinois. Some of those accusations are related to the 2008 child pornography trial in Chicago in which he was acquitted of all charges, even though the entire planet saw the video of him sexually assaulting a 14-year-old as well as urinating on her. It was a complete travesty of justice. 

Kelly also faces outstanding criminal charges in both Cook County, Ill., where he was indicted by the state attorney in February 2019 for aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four victims (three of whom were minors), and in Minnesota, where Kelly was charged in August 2019 with engaging in prostitution with a minor.

Hopefully this conviction will ease the hearts and minds of his countless victims and we all hope the sentencing will actually fit the crimes and he will live out the rest of his days behind bars.