For the second time in a year, R. Kelly has been found guilty of federal sex crimes
The singer was finally convicted for the infamous tape from the 2000s.
This story has a recount of sexual assault.
For the second time in a year, R. Kelly has been convicted of federal sex crimes — the consequences of an infamous tape from decades ago that depicted the singer urinating on a 14-year-old girl.
After ten hours of deliberation on Wednesday, a jury in Chicago found the singer guilty of six of the 13 counts in his trial — including three counts of producing child sex abuse images, and three counts of enticing underage girls to engage in criminal sexual activity. He was acquitted of seven other charges, including trying to obstruct justice during his previous 2008 trial and conspiring to receive child sexual abuse images. The court also acquitted Kelly’s former business manager, Derrell McDavid, and his former assistant, Milton Brown, for conspiring to receive child sexual abuse images.
“[The jurors] did their job, they looked at each count separately, and they obviously concluded, as I concluded long ago, that this case was overcharged,” Kelly's attorney Jennifer Bonjean told reporters at the courthouse. “We're not celebrating a win entirely, but we are happy that the jury really did look at each count.” When asked how Kelly was feeling, Bonjean said, “Mr. Kelly is used to bad news. He’s still got many fights to fight. But what he did say is that he had a sense of relief that this particular case was in the past now.” While his legal team might be seeing a small victory, at least three of the charges Kelly was found guilty of have minimum 10-year sentences. This comes after he was already found guilty of sex crimes last September in New York and was sentenced in June to 30 years in prison.
The verdict is the second time that Kelly is being held accountable for serial sex crimes that have been alleged for decades, while he evaded legal repercussions. US Attorney John R. Lausch, Jr. said in a statement, “While certain aspects of the charges and the trial made it difficult to obtain convictions for all of the charged conduct, it is clear that justice has been served by the guilty verdicts returned today.” The Chicago federal trial is being viewed as delayed justice after Kelly was found not guilty in a 2008 state trial around the aforementioned tape. In the previous trial, the girl from the tape refused to testify to the grand jury; but this time, the now 37-year-old woman testified under the pseudonym of Jane. She spoke of being convinced to lie to law enforcement over a decade prior. “I did everything I could to keep that a secret,” she said. “It was embedded in me that this could never come out.” According to ABC, Kelly gave a thumbs up to spectators on Wednesday but was otherwise unemotional. Two other sexual misconduct trials still await the singer, one in Minnesota and one in Chicago state court.