R. Kelly
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Former R & B singer Robert R. Kelly has been convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking by a federal jury in Brooklyn, NY today. 

Acting US attorney from the eastern district, Jacquelyn M Kasulis, made a statement outside of the courthouse after the verdict was read:

“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. This conviction would not have been possible without the bravery and resilience of R. Kelly’s victims. I applaud their courage in revealing in open court, the painful, intimate and horrific details of their lives with him,” Kasulis continued. “No one deserves what they experienced at his hands or the threats or harassment they faced about telling the truth about what happened to them.”

In this case, Kelly was facing a total of nine counts. One count of racketeering, with 14 underlying acts that include sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping, bribery, and sex trafficking charges. 

The jury who convicted Kelly was made up of seven men and five women. The jury was shown important audio and video evidence that the Publix or journalists were not able to see or hear. 

There were 45 prosecution witnesses in this case. Many of them under the alias of ‘Jane Doe’, One of the witnesses, identified as Stephanie stated the following in her testimony:

“I remember him asking me my age. When I said I was 17, he said it was fine.”

Another victim, identified as Sonja testified that Kelly invited her to Chicago and once she arrived, she was put into a room and locked inside for several days. She had said that she lost consciousness from lack of food. Once she woke up she saw Kelly adjusting his pants- leading her to believe that he sexually assaulted her when she was passed out.

R.Kelly did not have any reaction in court when the verdict was read however according to his attorney, he did not expect this outcome. Kelly is set to be sentenced on May 4th for these charges. One of Kelly’s attorneys is considering filing an appeal as they were upset with the verdict. 

“You didn’t get to see what we saw in terms of the discovery,” shared Kelly’s attorney Deveraux Cannick. “You didn’t get to see all the inconsistencies. We said in our summation that the government cherry-picked their version that they thought would support the continuation of the narrative.” 

Advocates for this case are pleased with the verdict. The group #mutekelly hopes that this outcome brings some peace to his victims. 

“We hope this verdict brings some sense of justice to the brave survivors who came forward,” #MuteRKelly said on Twitter.

Dream Hampton One of the executive producers of the Netflix Documentary, “Surviving R.Kelly” made a statement, also:

“I’m so grateful that his survivors sat for our cameras. Those interviews weren’t easy to do. I hope this verdict is a step in the direction of their long healing journeys.”

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