Shortly after R&B singer R. Kelly was indicted on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, attorney Michael Avenatti offered new details about a 40-minute video given to Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx.
It is unclear if the video was used as part of the case presented to the grand jury on Friday.
The tape, which Avenatti turned over to Foxx and Cook County prosecutors earlier in February, allegedly features the singer engaging in multiple sexual acts over a two-day period with a 14-year-old girl. Both Kelly and the girl, who remains unidentified given her minor status at the time the video was filmed, refer to her age multiple times in the video, Avenatti said.
“This was in no way role-playing. … It is clear that this young lady was 14 years of age during the time when it was shot,” Avenatti said.
The video was shot in 1999 in Kelly’s residence at the time, Avenatti said.
Avenatti, who rose to fame by representing porn star Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against President Donald Trump, also stated that the video features Kelly adjusting the angle of the camera, moving the camera, or zooming in and out, “there’s no question that he knew exactly what he was doing,” he said.
The video also indicates that Kelly played another video on a big screen television of the singer with another young girl and had the victim watch while engaged in a sexual act. The victim also reportedly referred to Kelly as “daddy,” Avenatti said.
“Today marks a watershed moment in the 25 years of abuse by this predator, known as R. Kelly,” Avenatti said. “He, together with those that enabled him, undertook a course of action over two decades to abuse and sexually assault young girls, especially many of whom were the most vulnerable in our society. Girls that many would not listen to, girls that came from very tough times and tough neighborhoods, in many instances. These were the most vulnerable, and yet this predator, Mr. Kelly, prayed on them repeatedly.”
Avenatti went on to say that the 10 month investigation, which is still ongoing, has found two additional tapes of Kelly with other victims. One of the tapes has been recovered and the other is in the process of being recovered, Avenatti said. He added that the tapes will be given to Foxx and Cook County prosecutors.
The tape already in the hands of Foxx is “far superior” to the recording used in Kelly’s 2008 trial, Avenatti said.
Kelly was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008. During that trial, the jury was shown a tape of the singer having sex with a girl as young as 13. Kelly and the alleged woman on the tape denied that the tape was of the two of them, despite testimony from witnesses stating that it was. The woman who allegedly appeared in the video never took the stand.
Avenatti is representing six people connected to the case, two victims, two parents of victims and two whistle-blowers that have been part of Kelly’s “inner circle” for more than 20 years. Avenatti did not confirm if the victim on the video given to Cook County prosecutors was one of his clients.
While Foxx did not take questions from the media during Friday’s press conference, she did confirm that the charges involved four victims of alleged sexual assaults by Kelly. Three of the victims were minors between ages 13 and 17 at the time of the alleged assaults. The alleged abuse dates from 1998 to 2010, Foxx said.
Kelly’s lawyer, Steve Greenberg, told the Chicago Sun-Times that Kelly was a “sacrificial lamb.”
“He’s going to go to bond court, and he’s gonna get out,” Greenberg said. “They’re making him a sacrificial lamb for their own sake and there’s no merit to any of this.”
Earlier this year, Greenberg told the Associated Press that Kelly “never knowingly had sex with an underage woman, he never forced anyone to do anything, he never held anyone captive, he never abused anyone.”
If convicted, Kelly could serve up to seven years in prison for each count. If a judge rules for the singer to serve consecutive sentences, he could face 70 years in prison. However, Foxx said probation could not be ruled out.
Avenatti warned Kelly that he shouldn’t “count on getting out of prison,” when answering questions from reporters.
“It is high time that you face justice for the conduct you have engaged in for over two decades and don’t count on getting out of prison,” Avenatti said.
Kelly is expected to turn himself in to authorities either today or tomorrow. He is scheduled for a bond hearing on Saturday and has another court appearance scheduled March 8 at 9 a.m.
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