Jury reached verdict in R. Kelly sex trafficking trial

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After a weeks-long federal sex trafficking trial, R. Kelly has been found guilty on all counts by a federal jury in Brooklyn Monday.

The anonymous jury made up of seven men and five women who have listened to witnesses and defenses from the R&B singer’s lawyer for over the past month announced they reached a verdict Monday afternoon.

Kelly, who has been in custody for much of the time since he was formally charged in 2019, was convicted on one count of racketeering and eight counts of violating the Mann Act, a law that bars the transport of people across state lines “for any immoral purpose.”

Kelly, who faces decades in prison when he’s sentenced on May 4, appeared stoic and wore a mask as the verdict was read aloud in the Brooklyn federal courtroom.

READ ALSOR. Kelly has a long stay in jail

Kelly, best known for the 1996 hit “I Believe I Can Fly,” pleaded not guilty to all charges in the case. The singer, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, did not take the stand in his own defense.

The prosecutors in the trial, which centered on the allegations of six people, alleged that the singer was a serial sexual predator who abused young women as well as underage girls and boys for more than two decades.

Prosecutors further alleged that the singer and his entourage led a criminal enterprise that recruited and groomed victims for sex, arranging for them to travel to concerts and other events across the U.S.

In a closing argument that lasted two days, Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Geddes accused Kelly and his entourage of using tactics from “the predator playbook” to control his victims.

READ ALSOR. Kelly in fresh child pornography, sex abuse charges

Kelly’s alleged tactics included confining victims in hotel rooms or his recording studio, managing when they could eat and use the bathroom, and forcing them to follow various “rules,” including demanding they call him “Daddy.”

“It is now time to hold the defendant responsible for the pain he inflicted on each of his victims,” Geddes said Thursday in federal court in Brooklyn. “It is now time for the defendant, Robert Kelly, to pay for his crimes. Convict him.”

Geddes characterized one of several explicit videos in evidence, which was seen by the jury during testimony but not made available to the public. She said the video showed Kelly grabbing a victim by the hair and forcing her to perform oral sex on another man.

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