R. Kelly arrested on sex trafficking charges again, reports say

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The arrest marks the third round of charges that the musician has faced in 2019.

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Musician R.Kelly has been arrested and charged with child trafficking offences, according to two law enforcement officials out of the US.

The 52-year-old was arrested on Thursday evening (US time) in Chicago on federal sex crime charges by Homeland Security Investigators and NYPD detectives but is expected to be extradited to New York for trial.

US reports say that the charges allegedly stem from a 13-count indictment that includes sex trafficking, child pornography and obstruction of justice.

The R’n’B singer whose real name is Robert Kelly faced similar charges in February this year when he was arrested in Illinois on 10 charges of aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four women.

As three of the victims were allegedly underage at the time of the incident, this led to charges of sexual abuse of minors and attempted assault, among others.

Kelly pled not guilty to these charges and was released on bail of US$1 million.

A month following his release, he was briefly sent back to jail for failing to pay his ex-wife, Andrea Kelly, the US$161,000 he owed in child support.

In May, 11 further charges of sexual abuse and assault were brought against him. Four of the charges were Class X, which means that each carries a sentence of up to 30 years if found guilty.

Kelly was the subject of a six-part Lifetime documentary series following decades of sexual abuse allegations. This followed years of controversy, including:

  • Allegedly marrying protege Aaliyah when she was 15 and he was 27 in 1994.

  • Was indicted but then acquitted on 14 counts of child pornography in 2002.

  • Three different sets of parents accused the singer of luring their daughters in a "sex cult" in 2017.

  • Accusations by a former partner of "intentionally" infecting her with a sexually transmitted disease in 2018.

Kelly has denied allegations he sexually abused women and girls. In March, in an interview with CBS’s ‘This Morning’, the emotional musician said: "Whether they're old rumours, new rumours, future rumours, they’re not true."

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