On Monday, August 9, 2021, GRAMMY award-winning singer R Kelly appeared in court for jury selection in his sex trafficking trial in Brooklyn, where a conviction could land him in prison for decades.
R Kelly is accused of organizing a group of managers, bodyguards, and others in recruiting women and girls for him to have sex with and abuse, as well as producing pornography, including child pornography, according to federal prosecutors.
Kelly has pleaded not guilty to a nine-count indictment alleging racketeering, bribery, extortion, and demanding “absolute commitment” from victims, including isolating them from friends and family and forcing them to call him “Daddy.”
The singer appeared before United States District Judge Ann Donnelly with a blue suit and tie with a light blue shirt. Dozens of potential jurors were questioned by prosecutors and defense attorneys both behind closed doors and in open court. Donnelly has stated that an alleged male victim can testify that Kelly sexually abused him, despite the fact that the majority of Kelly’s accusers are women.
The trial is scheduled to begin on August 18, 2021.