R Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex crimes

by | Jun 29, 2022 | World

R&B star R Kelly has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for using his superstardom to subject young fans — some just children — to systematic sexual abuse.The singer and songwriter, 55, was convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking last year at a trial that gave voice to accusers who had once wondered if their stories were being ignored because they were Black women.
US District Judge Ann Donnelly imposed the sentence on Wednesday after hearing from several survivors who attested to how Kelly’s exploitation reverberated across their lives.
“You made me do things that broke my spirit. I literally wished I would die because of how low you made me feel,” said one unnamed survivor, directly addressing Kelly, who kept his hands folded and his eyes downcast. “Do you remember that?”
Kelly did not address the court.
The sentence caps a slow-motion fall for Kelly, who was adored by legions of fans and sold millions of albums even after allegations about his abuse of young girls began circulating publicly in the 1990s.
Widespread outrage over Kelly’s sexual misconduct did not come until the #MeToo reckoning, reaching a crescendo after the release of the docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly.
R Kelly stands during his sentencing hearing at the Brooklyn Federal Courthouse in Brooklyn, on June 29, 2022, in this courtroom sketch [Jane Rosenberg/Reuters]
Kelly’s lawyers had argued he should get no more than 10 years in prison because he had a tr …

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