Ahead of R. Kelly’s upcoming trial, prosecutors are attempting to add new claims to his case, including allegations that the disgraced singer slept with underage boys.
Things are not looking promising for Kelly as the jury selection nears in his sex-trafficking trial. In a court filing on Friday, prosecutors added new claims the R&B artist had sexual relations with underage boys as well as girls, The Guardian reported.
While the new claims don’t include new charges, they come as Kelly vehemently denies abusing anyone. Kelly has been locked away since 2019 over charges of leading a criminal enterprise where his managers, bodyguards, and other employees helped him recruit women and girls for sexual engagements.
Now prosecutors want more than a dozen other victims who claim they were sexually or physically abused and mistreated by Kelly added to the mix. Among them is a 17-year-old boy that prosecutors say Kelly met at a McDonald’s back in 2006 and later invited to his Chicago studio, according to the Associated Press.
Kelly is accused of promising the young boy a music career, but instead thwarted him into a sexual relationship, court documents claim. It’s also said that during Kelly’s 2008 trial for child pornography, the underage boy told Kelly that he knew one of the jurors. Kelly is accused of telling the minor to contact the juror and tell them that he was a “good guy.”
Additionally, the new claims say the underage boy introduced Kelly to a 16- or 17-year-old male friend, someone the singer allegedly began a sexual relationship with several years later. Prosecutors say Kelly filmed the two underage males in sexual encounters with other people, including some of Kelly’s girlfriends, court documents say.
Prosecutors want to include the accounts of the two boys and other victims in an effort to show that Kelly’s actual sex trafficking charges “were not isolated events and were part of a larger pattern”.
On Monday, Kelly’s attorney Tom Farinella shut down the new claims.
“This is nothing more than a veiled effort to pile on to further shape the public’s perception in this case ignoring that Mr. Kelly is presumed innocent until proven otherwise,” Farinella told CNN. “The defense will vigorously oppose their requests. As the trial nears, we are looking forward to the truth prevailing.”
The jury selection for Kelly’s trial is due to start on August 9 in New York federal court.