R. Kelly Sentenced To 30 Years In Jail For Sex Abuse

R. Kelly has been sentenced to 30 years for using his celebrity status to sexually abuse children and women.

R Kelly Sentenced 30 years
R. Kelly's lawyers have implied that they plan to appeal the verdict. | © R. Kelly via Twitter

R. Kelly, or Robert Sylvester Kelly to give him his actual name, was once described as the "king of R&B". He sold 75 million records worldwide and won a total of 110 different music awards over his 3-decade career. But for the last 20 years, he's also been facing accusations of racketeering, trafficking and sexual abuse.

Until 2019, these accusations had been led by the press, most famously Buzzfeed, who claimed that he was holding women against their will in a sex cult. But in 2019, criminal charges were brought against him by the Cook County State's Attorney's Office in Illinois. Then things worsened for Kelly, when he was federally indicted on a further 18 charges. His federal trial in New York began in July 2021, and he was found guilty on 9 counts. On Wednesday, June 29 of 2022, he was finally sentenced.

R. Kelly Gets 30 Years

Judge Donnelly sentenced Kelly to 30 years imprisonment, describing his actions as "calculated and carefully planned and regularly executed for almost 25 years." Kelly's legal team have made it clear they plan to appeal the sentencing. In all, he was found guilty of the following charges:

  • One count of Racketeering (18 U.S.C. § 1962(c))
  • Eight Mann Act violations:
    • Three counts of transportation across state lines for illegal sexual activity (18 U.S.C. § 2421(a))
    • Four counts coercion and enticement (18 U.S.C. § 2422(a))
    • One count of transportation of a minor (18 U.S.C. § 2423(a))

Kelly faces another trial in August in Chicago, for child pornography charges, and a further trial in Minnesota for sex abuse crimes.

The reaction has been one of relief for victims. And while Kelly still has a group of supporters online, their numbers seem to be dwindling.