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R Kelly Jurors to Be Shown Videos of Alleged Statutory Rape

Involving his then-14-year-old goddaughter

r kelly video trial child pornography statutory rape legal news
R. Kelly, photo by Antonio Perez – Pool via Getty Images
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    Warning: The following article contains potentially triggering material relating to sexual assault and violence. If you are a victim of sexual assault, call RAINN at 1-800-656-4673.

    Jurors in R Kelly’s ongoing federal trial in Illinois are expected to be shown videos of the disgraced R&B singer allegedly engaging in statutory rape with his then-14-year-old goddaughter, the New York Post reports.

    Prosecutors alleged Wednesday that R. Kelly had videotaped himself raping multiple children, and that three of those tapes involve his goddaughter: “The defendant, Robert Kelly, had sex with multiple children,” Assistant US Attorney Jason Julien said. “He made videotapes of himself having sex with children.”

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    Prosecutors also said that Kelly went to “extraordinary” lengths to cover up evidence that he had committed statutory rape. Julien added that more videos would not be shown to jurors because Kelly and his co-defendants, Derrel McDavid and Milton Brown, allegedly covered up the footage. However, witnesses are expected to testify about it.

    “[Kelly has] a hidden side, a dark side, that he — with the help of McDavid and Brown — did not allow the world to see,” Julien added regarding the videos. “This trial is about Kelly’s hidden side.”

    On the other hand, Kelly’s attorney Jennifer Bonjean urged the jury to not think of her client as “a monster”: “It is true that Mr. Kelly is imperfect,” she said. “On his journey from poverty to stardom, he stumbled along the way.”

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    Kelly faces multiple counts of sexual exploitation of a child, enticement of a female and possession of material containing child pornography, conspiracy to defraud the US government, and obstruction of justice.

    In June, Kelly was sentenced to 30 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of racketeering related to the sexual exploitation of children, kidnapping, and forced labor, as well as eight charges of violating the Mann Act in a separate federal case in New York. The disgraced R&B singer is also facing state charges in Illinois and Minnesota.

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