R. Kelly was found guilty in September 2021 of running a sexual exploitation “system” for more than 10 years. His sentence was announced on Wednesday June 29 and the former singer was sentenced to 30 years in prison. According to the American press, R. Kelly remained silent after the announcement of the verdict.
This sentencing comes 9 months after the 6-week trial held in Brooklyn Federal Court in New York. During this trial, the sex crimes of the 55-year-old singer, known worldwide for his title I Believe I Can Fly, had been revealed and 50 people had come to testify, including 9 women and 2 men who accused R. Kelly of having sexually abused them. They described rapes, forced drug taking, situations of imprisonment or even facts of child pornography. Already before his trial, the actions of R. Kelly had already been denounced in the documentary Surviving R. Kelly in 2019. The singer was eventually found guilty of all charges, namely extortion, sexual exploitation of a minor, kidnapping, trafficking, corruption and forced labor, over a period from 1994 to 2018. A sentence of at least 25 years was requested by the prosecutor while the defense of R. Kelly hoped for a sentence of between 14 and 17 and a half years. After Wednesday’s verdict was announced, a legal representative for R. Kelly said his team would likely appeal for a reduced sentence.