R. Kelly will serve one additional year in prison in latest sentencing

R. Kelly
R. Kelly

Adding to the list of prison time R. Kelly will serve after having been found guilty of numerous sex crimes over the past two years, a recent guilty conviction will throw an additional year on his current 30-year sentence. USA Today reports a federal jury in Chicago found Kelly guilty of three counts of child pornography and three counts of child enticement.

The conviction comes with a 20-year sentence; however, “19 of those years will be served concurrently with his existing prison time.” So ultimately, Kelly will get one year added to the 30-year prison sentence he’s currently serving. U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber determined he will concurrently serve this new set of convictions, giving him an extra year to the 30 he’s doing for a racketeering and sex trafficking conviction in New York in 2021.

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The judge’s ruling can be viewed as having some leniency for Kelly. Prosecutors recommended the “Ignition (Remix)” singer serve an additional 25 years on top of his current sentence, suggesting a punishment that goes beyond the guidelines. USA Today says that the prosecution argued his “desire to sexually abuse children is insatiable” and that keeping him behind bars was essential to protecting the community from him.

A statement by one of Kelly’s accusers under the pseudonym “Jane” reminded the court of the actual human toll these crimes have and the lingering effects on survivors of sexual assault. “I have lost my dreams to Robert Kelly,” the statement said. “I will never get back what I lost to Robert Kelly [...] I have been permanently scarred by Robert.”

“When your virginity is taken by a pedophile at 14 […] your life is never your own.”

However, the judge wasn’t buying the prosecution’s argument. Leinenweber said that he disagreed with the argument that Kelly didn’t use fear as a tool for coercion. “The [government’s] whole theory of grooming was sort of the opposite of fear of bodily harm,” Leinenweber said. “It was the fear of lost love, lost affections [from Kelly].”

Despite Kelly forcing himself upon girls and creating a culture of rape, fear, and abuse among those in his orbit, Leinenweber decided that “it just doesn’t seem to me that it rises to the fear of bodily harm.” Judges have such a keen insight into the lives of victims. It’s staggering, really.

As a result, and as of this reporting, Kelly will serve 31 years in federal prison, and the 56-year-old singer will be eligible for release when he is about 80.

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