Things are now reaching a boiling point in R. Kelly’s ongoing sex-trafficking case. The singer will now head to New York City where he will officially begin trial and come face to face with his accusers.
Opening arguments are set to take place on August 18th before a jury of twelve people who were anonymously selected last week. According to CNN, they will be the only people from the public that are allowed to have an “in-person view of the trial” due to coronavirus restrictions. Prosecutors will state their case for or against the singer who has been charged with a bevy of heinous crimes from racketeering, to assault and sexual abuse.
Prosecutors have also selected multiple “female accusers — mostly identified in court papers as “Jane Does” — and cooperating former associates who have never spoken publicly before about their experiences with Kelly,” the Huffington Post notes.
As MADAMENOIRE previously reported, the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer has been hit with over 22 federal criminal charges that allege him of sexually abusing young women and girls between 1994-2018. The star allegedly formed a sex ring comprised of the young women he preyed upon and forced them into submission, with some even revealing that they were filmed being abused. Kelly’s enterprise made up of managers, bodyguards and personal assistants helped the star to cover up his dark sexual abuse crimes over the years.
“The purposes of the Enterprise were to promote R. Kelly’s music and the R. Kelly brand and to recruit women and girls to engage in illegal sexual activity with Kelly,” one of the indictments read.
As the women prepare to take the stand, Kelly’s victims worry that his entourage will attempt to obstruct justice. However, Gerald Griggs, an attorney who represents several of the accusers explained that despite their fears, the women are more than ready to testify after being embroiled in the painstakingly long case for years.
“They’re understandably nervous but they’ve been focused on getting justice for a long time so they’re ready,” he told CNN. “There’s definitely that fear of enablers doing things to try to obstruct justice. But we’re confident in the evidence and we’re confident in the jury.”
The trial is set to last six to eight weeks and if Kelly is deemed guilty he will face decades behind bars.