R Kelly to be taken in custody to NY to face racketeering charges

American singer R Kelly has been ordered to transfer to New York for his arraignment on racketeering charges that allege the singer recruited young girls for sexual abuse at concerts across the country, Variety cited Chicago Tribune. Currently held without bond in Chicago, Kelly will be brought by US Marshals to the federal courthouse in Brooklyn for an August 2 hearing, and will be returned to Chicago for a status hearing on September 4 on a separate indictment.

On Friday, Kelly’s former employee Milton ‘June’ Brown pleaded not guilty before a federal magistrate judge in Chicago to a charge of conspiracy to receive child pornography. A judge ordered him released on his own recognisance. Kelly pleaded not guilty to child pornography and other charges on Tuesday during his hearing at a federal court in Chicago.

However, the judge gave orders that the singer will be held without bond for now. “Mr Kelly pleaded not guilty to the charges pending in Chicago. Judge [Harry] Leinenweber denied bond so he’ll remain detained in federal custody,” the US Attorney said in a statement.

This comes after the singer was arrested on child pornography and other federal criminal charges in Chicago. The tapes were given by people from Kelly’s inner circle who are described as ‘enablers’ by Gerald Griggs, a lawyer for one of the victims.

The case against Kelly was even bolstered by medical records, phone records, text messages, pictures among others, claimed the prosecutors earlier in the court, asking for the singer to remain jailed while the trial goes on.

Kelly was charged in February with 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, a Class 2 felony, involving four alleged victims, including three who prosecutors say were underage girls. The charges cover allegations from 1998 to 2010.

In May, a grand jury indicted him with 11 more charges pertaining to one of those four accusers. Those charges included not only aggravated criminal sexual abuse but also more serious charges aggravated criminal sexual assault, a Class X felony, and criminal sexual assault, a Class 1 felony.

A person convicted of Class X felonies can be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison. Class 1 and 2 felonies generally carry lower maximum penalties. 

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