R. Kelly’s Child Pornography Conviction and Sentence Upheld

by Patria

The 20-year prison sentence and child pornography conviction of R&B singer R. Kelly have been upheld following an appeal. The 57-year-old artist, whose legal name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, was convicted in 2022 on multiple charges related to producing child sexual abuse images and enticement of minors for sex.

In his appeal, Kelly argued that Illinois’ previous statute of limitations, which required the prosecution of child sex crime charges within ten years, should have been applied instead of the current law allowing charges as long as the accuser is alive. Additionally, his legal team contended that charges involving one accuser should have been separated from those involving three other accusers due to video evidence presented during the Chicago trial.

Federal prosecutors presented a video during the trial showing Kelly engaging in abusive behavior with a girl. The accuser, who remains anonymous, testified that she was 14 at the time of the video recording.

A three-judge panel upheld the conviction, noting that jurors acquitted Kelly on some counts despite viewing the disturbing video evidence. They also emphasized the severity of Kelly’s crimes, leading to the imposition of a tough sentence.

Kelly’s lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, stated that Kelly intends to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court. In addition to his child pornography conviction, Kelly received a concurrent 30-year sentence in 2022 in New York for federal racketeering and sex-trafficking convictions.

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