R. Kelly is on trial again. Again it is about the allegation of sexual abuse of minors. A video that is now world-famous plays a central role in the process.
Chicago – At the start of the new trial against ex-pop star R. Kelly, prosecutors made serious allegations against the 55-year-old.
“The defendant Robert Kelly had sex with several children. He videotaped himself having sex with young children,” prosecutor Jason Julien said in his opening statement in Chicago, according to CNN. Julien also announced that an alleged victim of Kelly would testify: the then 14-year-old was seen in a video that was shot more than 20 years ago and became world-famous. In it, the musician is said to have sexually abused her and urinated on her.
Just weeks after being sentenced to 30 years in prison for molesting a child, Kelly faces 13 counts in Chicago, including multiple counts of manufacturing child pornography, inducing a juvenile to engage in sexual activity and obstructing justice. Two of his former employees have also been charged.
The video with the then 14-year-old will play a central role in the process. Kelly was acquitted in a previous trial on the 2008 case. The public prosecutor’s office now accuses him of having put pressure on the victim at the time so that she did not testify in the process.
Kelly’s attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, said in her opening statement to the 12 jurors in Kelly’s presence that the witness’s promised testimony is at odds with her past accounts: “For the past 22 years, she has adamantly denied that it was her in this video . Before it came to criminal investigations, she denied it. She’s denied it repeatedly to prosecutors, she’s denied it to social workers and police officers. She denied it under oath before a grand jury.”
The process should take about a month. Kelly faces another decade in prison. dpa