R Kelly: how long has singer been sentenced to for sex-trafficking scheme - what have the victims said?
R Kelly has been handed the sentence after being convicted of multiple counts of sex-trafficking and racketeering
R Kelly has been jailed for 30 years for sex trafficking and racketeering.
During the hearing Kelly was branded “the pied piper of R&B” as he came face to face with several of his victims who detailed his “deplorable and inexplicable” abuse.
The former 90s superstar had masterminded an elaborate scheme to entice and sexually exploit aspiring young singers and under-age children.
He was convicted on multiple counts of racketeering, relating to bribery and forced labour, by a jury in September last year.
Kelly, 55, was also found in violation of an anti-sex trafficking law known as the Mann Act.
The singer, real name Robert Sylvester Kelly, who denied all charges, was found guilty on all nine counts against him after a six-week trial in Brooklyn, New York.
Known for songs including Bump N’ Grind and I Believe I Can Fly, he has been detained at the Metropolitan Detention Centre in Brooklyn since his conviction.
What did the judge say?
R Kelly appeared in court for his sentencing after he was found guilty on all nine counts of sex-trafficking and racketeering in relation to bribery and forced labour in September 2021.
Judge Ann Donnelly ruled on the sentencing of the singer, giving him 30 years in prison.
She said: “These crimes were calculated and carefully planned and regularly executed for almost 25 years.
“You taught them that love is enslavement and violence.”
What did the victims say at the hearing?
At his sentencing on Wednesday, the court heard victim impact statements from seven women, presented anonymously to the court as Jane Does, who detailed Kelly’s “God-like complex” and how he used his “fame and power” to entice his victims.
A woman using the pseudonym Angela told him: “The pied piper of R&B, both in music and in technique and in approach.
“Success and love… you presented these glittering gems as if they were gold.
“With every addition of a new victim you grew in wickedness, cockiness, diminishing any form of humanity or self-awareness, which soon became the breeding ground for your God-like complex.
“You were doing, saying and encouraging despicable things that no one should be doing.
“We reclaim our names from beneath the shadows of your afflicted trauma.”
Kelly, dressed in a grey prison-issue uniform, looked straight ahead as the emotional statements were read out.
At one point a woman known as Jane Doe number two halted her statement saying she “did not want to interrupt (Kelly’s) conversation” as the singer appeared to confer with his lawyer.
“You are an abuser, you are shameless, you are disgusting,” she told him.
What did R Kelly’s lawyer say?
Immediately after the sentencing, R Kelly’s lawyers indicated that he would not be making a statement.
Prior to the sentencing, R Kelly’s lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, told the judge that the sentence should “not be based onn inflamed emotions”, adding that the record producer was “widly accepted as a musical genuis”.
She added: “Mr. Kelly rejects that’s he’s this monster.”