R. Kelly Ordered Held Without Bond, Pleads Not Guilty - NBC New York
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R. Kelly Ordered Held Without Bond, Pleads Not Guilty

Prosecutors want Kelly to remain in federal custody, where he's been since his arrest Thursday,

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    R. Kelly Ordered Held Without Bond, Pleads Not Guilty

    Singer R. Kelly was denied bond Tuesday as he faces charges that he recruited girls and women to have illegal sex with him and then covered up the crimes by paying and threatening the victims and witnesses. Charlie Wojciechowski reports.

    (Published Tuesday, July 16, 2019)

    Singer R. Kelly was denied bond Tuesday as he faces charges that he recruited girls and women to have illegal sex with him and then covered up the crimes by paying and threatening the victims and witnesses.

    Kelly appeared in a Chicago federal courtroom wearing an orange jumpsuit and shackles on his legs.

    Prosecutors urged a judge to keep Kelly in federal custody, where he's been since his arrest Thursday, calling him dangerous and a flight risk. Kelly faces a maximum of 195 years in prison on charges filed in Illinois, prosecutors said, and a maximum of 80 years on charges filed in New York.

    Prosecutors called Kelly an "extreme danger to the community ... especially little girls," alleging the singer abused girls "hundreds of times."

    "The defendant repeatedly sexually abused a 14-year-old girl and filmed it," the prosecutor said. "Now we have the tapes."

    "Fame and power give him a unique power to influence and intimidate witnesses," the prosecutor continued, adding, "it’s who the defendant is and what he has been doing his whole life. It won’t go away."

    In February, the 52-year-old R&B singer was charged with and pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse over alleged abuse of three minors and one woman over a period of 10 years. Not long after, he was jailed once again over child support payments.

    In June, Kelly pleaded not guilty to 11 new counts of sexual assault and sexual abuse in Illinois. Four of the new charges were Class X felonies, the most serious felony offense in Illinois, short of first-degree murder. It carries a mandatory minimum sentence of six to 30 years in prison.

    Kelly's attorney Steve Greenberg said that the June allegations against Kelly stemmed from "an existing case" involving the one of the four alleged victims from prior charges.

    "The charges arose from alleged conduct in the Northern District of Illinois as well as the Eastern District of New York," Greenberg said in a statement. "The conduct alleged appears to largely be the same as the conduct previously alleged against Mr. Kelly in his current State indictment and his former State charges that he was acquitted of. Most, if not all of the conduct alleged, is decades old."

    Federal judges were supposed to meet Monday in Chicago to figure out how to proceed in the case that involves separate indictments out of Chicago and New York but that will be discussed Tuesday before Kelly is arraigned.

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