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R Kelly prison sentencing updates: Artist sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex trafficking, racketeering

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R Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison

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. He faced seven of his accusers today in court who gave victim impact statements recounting their experiences with the singer.

Prosecutors had called for him to receive more than 25 years behind bars in order to “protect the public” from the singer. He was convicted on nine counts last September, which included one racketeering and eight counts of Mann Act violations.

Gloria Allred, who is representing the three women who testified against R Kelly, told reporters that “no one can undo the harm that has been done to these victims.”

Defense attorneys representing R Kelly are hopeful that details revealing their client’s own abuse as a child will move the judge to offer the singer a lighter sentence.

They had called for a sentence of 10 years or fewer, arguing that anything beyond that would be indefensible. The attorneys have claimed that the prosecution’s desire to lock the 55-year-old singer up for 25 years is “tantamount to a life sentence.”

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R Kelly victim says 30-year-prison term is ‘spot on’

Sonja, a victim of R Kelly’s abuse who testified in court, has hailed the singer’s prison term.

In an interview with Los Angeles Times after the sentencing, Sonja, whose last name is not being revealed to protect her identity, said that she was intimidated by people in the singer’s circle for years.

“I’ve been followed, I’ve been approached at networking events,” she said.“It happened a few different times.”

On each occasion she says she immediately got away from the person who was chatting with her and went “off the grid for a few days.”

“Thirty years is spot on for me,” she said.

“I have been enduring this for almost two decades. I am very happy with the sentence. Very happy.”

R&B singer R. Kelly’s supporter reacts following the sentencing hearing at Brooklyn Federal Court in New York, on June 29, 2022.

(AFP via Getty Images)

Sravasti Dasgupta30 June 2022 06:30

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R Kelly’s victims say 30 year sentence ‘not enough’

R Kelly’s victims have said that the 30 year prison term handed to the singer, while welcome, is “not enough.”

“I personally don’t think it’s enough but I’m pleased with it,” said accuser Lizzette Martinez.

Another victim Jovante Cunningham, who first met Kelly at age 14, said his abuse spanned 30 years and “30 years is what he got.”

“There wasn’t a day in my life that I actually believed the judicial system would come through for black and brown girls,” Ms Cunningham said outside court.

Ms Cunningham who was a former backup dancer for Kelly added that she “absolutely” cried when the sentence came down and that she felt “overwhelmed.”

(AFP via Getty Images)

Sravasti Dasgupta30 June 2022 06:00

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R Kelly a ‘prolific serial predator’ who preyed on the ‘young and vulnerable’

Steve K Francis, acting executive associate director of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) who announced R Kelly’s sentencing, has called the singer a “prolific serial predator.”

“Robert Kelly is 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. For nearly thirty years, Kelly and his accomplices silenced his victims through bribery, intimidation, blackmail and physical violence, confident they were immune to justice” Mr Francis said.

“Today’s sentence is a victory which belongs to the survivors of Kelly’s abuse. These brave women and men came forward, despite threats to their own personal safety, and were forced to relive the pain of the most traumatic days of their lives to tell the truth and make their voices heard.”

(REUTERS)

Sravasti Dasgupta30 June 2022 05:15

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R Kelly will face a second trial in August

R Kelly will face another trial, this time in federal court, beginning in August.

On 15 August, R Kelly will stand trial on charges that he possessed child sexual abuse images. It will be the second time he faces charges relating to child sexual abuse images.

He was previously acquitted in 2008 on similar charges.

Kelly has pleaded not guilty.

Graig Graziosi30 June 2022 04:00

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EXPLAINER: What was R Kelly convicted of and how much jail time did he get?

R Kelly is facing a potential quarter century in prison.

What brought R Kelly to this point, and what is the context surrounding his arrest, conviction, and eventual sentencing?

The Independent’s Graeme Massie explores and explains the circumstances and crimes that led R Kelly to today’s ruling.

Graig Graziosi30 June 2022 03:00

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ICYMI: Victims accuse R Kelly of ‘deplorable, inexplicable acts’ in harrowing sentencing impact statements

Seven women who were abused by R Kelly spoke Wednesday during his sentencing hearing, recounting the pain they have dealt with as a result of the singer’s crimes.

With every addition of a new victim you grew in wickedness, cockiness, diminishing any form of humanity or self-awareness,” one victim said during the hearing.

Jenna Amatulli has more from the victims in the story below:

Graig Graziosi30 June 2022 02:00

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WATCH: R Kelly is sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex trafficking and racketeering

R Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison

Graig Graziosi30 June 2022 01:00

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ICYMI: R Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex trafficking and racketeering

R&B singer R Kelly has been sentenced to 30 years in prison on sex trafficking and racketeering charges.

Read more in the story below:

Graig Graziosi30 June 2022 00:00

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R Kelly’s attorney Steve Greenberg says sentencing is an ‘abuse’ of prosecution

R Kelly’s attorney Steve Greenberg told Law and Crime that the singer’s 30-year prison sentence is an ‘abuse’ of prosecution.

Watch his comments in the clip below:

Graig Graziosi29 June 2022 23:00

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Lizzette Martinez, who gave a victim impact statement during the sentencing hearing, said she hoped R Kelly would get a harsher sentence

Lizzette Martinez, a suvivor of R Kelly’s abuse and who gave a victim impact statement during his sentencing hearing, said the singer kept her as a “sex slave.”

“I personally don’t think it’s enough but I’m pleased with it,” she told reporters after the ruling.

Graig Graziosi29 June 2022 22:30

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