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R. Kelly: Beyond the Narrative

Updated: Feb 20, 2023

Robert Sylvester Kelly (R. Kelly)

Robert Sylvester Kelly, better known worldwide as R. Kelly, has been a musical icon for decades, known for not only his own creative musical genius but also for writing music for some of the biggest artists in the world. Robert is no stranger to accusations, which have made him a larger target for multiple people to accuse him of sexual crimes and thereby reach monetary settlements.

In 2018, Robert became a target of #TimesUp and they joined forces with #MuteRKelly, a social campaign pushing to investigate his “behavior”. During this time, he had no pending cases, no one had filed a criminal case, nothing. This organization protested and pressured music streaming services to remove his music from their platform, which they did.

#MuteRKelly rallied at his concerts and record label, essentially cutting off any financial earnings under the notion that the court system is unable to protect “young black women and girls”. They didn't need the legal system to find him guilty - they knew he was a “serial sexual abuser”.

How #TimesUp Targeted R. Kelly

In January 2019, the Surviving R. Kelly 'mockumentary' aired for millions on the TV network Lifetime (Surviving R.Kelly). This two-part programme showcased a parade of women: some from decades ago, some claiming to have been children when they were involved with him.

Again, at that point no one had filed a criminal case against him.

Two days after the airing of this (scripted) program, Chicago’s Cook County prosecutor Kim Foxx went on national TV with a Kim Foxx public plea press conference. This was a plea for “possible victims” to come forward with a toll-free number for anyone to call and report a crime they may have experienced at the hands of Robert.

Kim Foxx stated there was “nothing that could be done” without victims and witnesses coming forward, because there were no charges; she was strictly using the two part television programme as a catalyst to start an investigation.

One month later, in February 2019, Robert was arrested and charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse in Chicago. On May 30, he was charged with 11 new sex related counts in a Chicago federal court. July 2019, he was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of child pornography, enticement of a minor, and obstruction of justice. A separate indictment was issued by New York July 2019 which included racketeering, kidnapping, forced labor, and sexual exploitation of a child. That same month he was arrested again and denied bond because he was deemed a “extreme danger to young girls”. He has been incarcerated ever since.

R. Kelly’s New York case began August 2021 where his charges were sex trafficking and violating the Mann Act. In September 2021, he was convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking on 9 counts. U.S. District Judge Ann Donnelly added in her closing statements “this case is not about sex but violence, cruelty, and control.”

Robert was sentenced to 30 years in prison for running a criminal enterprise to sexually exploit young women and children. In his Chicago federal case, Robert was convicted of three counts of child pornography and three counts of child enticement. In the Chicago case, he had two co-defendants (an ex-manager and ex-assistant). They were both found Not Guilty.

Trial Corruption

One important detail to note in these federal cases (in two different states) is that the government prosecutors and judge played many word games in order to gain their convictions.

In Chicago, starting with the jury selection process, Robert’s attorney was championing not to allow any juror that had seen Surviving R. Kelly to be on the jury, stating those that viewed it would have a tainted notion about him. Judge Leinenweber denied the motion and allowed people that had watched some or all of the program.

Before the verdict came down the jurors had multiple questions during deliberation. One question in particular the jury asked was:

“If they had to find Robert both enticed and coerced minors or that he either enticed or coerced them.”

As you can imagine that one word difference is a fine line between guilty or not guilty verdict, so the judge had allowed a change from the original indictment.

In New York, Judge Ann Donnelly immediately created an atmosphere of secrecy when it came to the trial. The media and public were not able to watch the trial in person. Instead, an overflow room was used and the trial was watched on TV monitors (which was unusual for a case of this size).

The jury was completely blocked from public view. More interestingly she allowed “certain” media into the court room for the verdict to be read (Secret Trial).

The jury also had questions during deliberation for nine of the counts, because the language read: “Persuade, induce, entice AND coerce” or should it instruct “Persuade, induce entice OR coerce.” The prosecution of course wanted the word to be “or” since that would give them more opportunity for a guilty verdict. Robert’s attorneys argued for “and”, which was how it was worded in the original indictment. Yet, Judge Donnelly agreed with the prosecution and allowed the word change. This was a chance for the prosecutors in both cases to abuse their power and make rules up as they went along.

The argument remains how would a “serial abuser” of this magnitude pull off what the government alleged? Three decades of abusing women and underage girls by using his celebrity brand to recruit and run a sex cult? Why did the prosecutor have to beg “victims” to come forward on national TV? Why did they have to use an overarching charge of RICO, that’s historically been used for organized crimes of involving murder, kidnapping, robbery and extortion?

They alleged women were kidnapped and not allowed to leave, yet during testimony they revealed they had phones; they were communicating with people outside the home I had my phone. The alleged bribery for a marriage license that their star witness (ex-manager Demetrius Smith) testified that Robert had no idea about. This was also a manager that didn’t want to testify, was giving an immunity deal, stole money from Robert in the past, and was fired Criminals as Witnesses.

Speaking of criminals, both trials were filled with extortionists, scammers, thieves and other shady people as witnesses and alleged victims, and everyone received an immunity deal for testifying against Robert. Some call that government pressure to tell the story how they want it told or risk going to prison themselves (they were putting the squeeze on people).

1) How do you get due process when you have a biased TV documentary put out on you, and parading women in front of a camera to tell their version of truth? Yet no-one went to file a police report?

2) How do you avoid being found guilty well before you even get a day in court when you have a machine like #TimesUp - with endless resources and political power behind it - all while cutting the defendant off financially so he can’t afford appropriate legal representation?

3) How do you achieve the promise of a speedy and public trial when the judge makes up the rules to keep the court proceedings behind closed doors not expose these accusers in the media for the lies they tell?

4) How do you get hit with overreaching charges that tell a completely opposite story of that of which he was accused?

5) How is a star of this size completely broke after three decades in the industry? Follow the money.

By A.R. (Robert Sylvester Kelly Supporter)

Please let us know if you think that there is a mistake in this article, explaining what you think is wrong and why. We will correct any errors as soon as possible.

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