R. Kelly should be behind bars for 30 years. Just three days after being sentenced, the former R'n'B superstar is suing his Brooklyn jail. His lawyers argue that he is under special surveillance not because he is suicidal, but to punish him.
R. Kelly is currently being held in a detention center in the Brooklyn borough of New York, after being sentenced to 30 years in prison on Wednesday. According to consistent US media reports, the former R
Kelly was found guilty of nine charges in 2021 - including sexual exploitation of minors and kidnapping. As the prosecution explained in the process, helpers recruited young girls and women for sex with the world star. Kelly used "lies, manipulation, threats" to sexually abuse women and girls with impunity for decades. The R'n'B singer himself always rejected the allegations. In court, the defense portrayed Kelly as a "sex symbol" who simply lived a "playboy life."
The decision to place Kelly under surveillance was made for "pure punitive reasons" and because her client is a "celebrity inmate," Kelly's attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, told US magazine "People" in a statement. Corresponding court documents say that the 55-year-old is not suicidal and that it is a "cruel and unusual punishment". This type of special guard could therefore cause "serious mental damage".
When asked by the magazine, the responsible prison authority said that for security reasons no details about the prison conditions of individual inmates were published. The top priority, however, is "humane treatment" of imprisoned people.
Kelly's lawyers have already announced an appeal against the verdict. Another abuse trial against the musician is scheduled to begin in Chicago in mid-August.