R. Kelly was sentenced on Wednesday to 30 years in prison, following the multiplatinum R&B singer's conviction for exploiting his stardom and wealth over decades to lure women and underage girls into his orbit for sex.
The sentence was imposed nine months after Kelly, 55, was convicted of racketeering and sex crimes, in a trial that amplified accusations that had dogged the singer of the Grammy-winning hit "I Believe I Can Fly" for two decades. read more
U.S. District Judge Ann Donnelly in Brooklyn federal court said the evidence reflected Kelly's "indifference to human suffering" and "sheer brutality" toward his victims.
"This case is not about sex. It's about violence and cruelty and control," Donnelly told Kelly. "You left in your wake a trail of broken lives."
Kelly, whose full name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, is among the most prominent people convicted of sexual misbehavior during the #MeToo movement against such conduct by prominent men.
He did not speak during Wednesday's hearing, but has repeatedly denied sexual abuse accusations.
After the sentence was read, his lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, told reporters Kelly was "devastated" by the sentence but that he would appeal.
"Thirty years in prison is like a life sentence for him," Bonjean said.
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