AceShowbiz - R. Kelly has been handed a 20-year prison sentence for his convictions on child sexual abuse images and enticement of minors for sex charges. The disgraced RnB sensation, 56, is already serving 30 years on racketeering charges, and was told by U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber on Thursday, February 23, in Chicago the new two-decade sentence will be served simultaneously with the previous term.
Mr. Leinenweber also ordered Kelly serve another year in prison on top of the 30-year sentence handed down following his earlier trial in New York. Kelly was found guilty of three counts of producing child pornography and three counts of enticing a minor into criminal sexual activity.
After he completes his sentence for the New York conviction, he has to serve one more year for his latest conviction in Chicago. Including Thursday’s sentence, Kelly will serve no more than 31 years and will be eligible for release at around age 80.
Kelly spoke briefly at the start of Thursday's hearing, saying, "Your honour, I have gone over it with my attorney. I'm just relying on my attorney for that."
The Chicago Sun-Times reported Mr Leinenweber announced in court, "No matter what I do, Mr Kelly isn’t going out the door after today. Bear in mind he's 56 years old. And as (his lawyer Jennifer) Bonjean points out, he has a life expectancy of not a hell of a lot more – eight, 10 years."
Kelly's attorney added she plans to appeal the sentence, which comes five months after he was found guilty of several sex crimes. During the trial, the jury viewed segments of videos of Kelly sexually abusing an underage girl, who was the disgraced singer's goddaughter. The girl, who went by "Jane" during the trial, said Kelly began sexually abusing her when he was only 14 and when she turned 15, she told the jury that they began having sexual intercourse "innumerable times," adding the instances were "uncountable."
Jane said in a statement, "I will never get back what I lost to Robert Kelly … I have been permanently scarred by Robert. When your virginity is taken by a paedophile at 14... your life is never your own."
Another accuser, who used the pseudonym "Nia" during the trial addressed Kelly directly and said, "Now you are here... because there is something wrong with you. No longer will you be able to harm children."
"Ignition" singer Kelly was found guilty in 2021 of all nine counts against him, including racketeering and violations of the Mann Act, which prohibits the transport of "any woman or girl" across state lines for any "immoral purpose." The conviction saw him sentenced in June to 30 years behind bars.