Prosecutor sheds light on R. Kelly’s ‘dark side’ in opening statements

A federal prosecutor made an initial attempt to shed light on R. Kelly’s “dark side” during opening statements at the disgraced entertainer’s federal sex crimes and child pornography trial in Chicago on Wednesday, August 17.

According to Chicago Grandstand, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Julien told jurors the superstar singer “had another side, a hidden side, a dark side, that he…didn’t allow the world to see.” Julien also accused Kelly’s co-defendants Derrel McDavid and Milton Brown of knowing about Kelly’s alleged actions and helping him keep this “dark side” private.

Julien then presented the case that the prosecutors will try to build against Kelly throughout the trial. He claimed the singer “had sex with several children” and that he “made videotapes of himself having sex with children”, including his own goddaughter, identified as “Jane”. . Jurors would see portions of three videos that would show Kelly and Jane, and in two of them, Kelly would reference Jane’s “14-year-old” anatomy.

At one point, Julien noted that Kelly had made “extraordinary efforts” to protect herself after investigators began investigating the sexual misconduct allegations against her. He later claimed there was a fourth videotape allegedly containing child pornography. And even though the jury wouldn’t see parts of it because Kelly and his associates could have covered it up, Julien said they would hear testimony from witnesses who could speak to his existence.

Kelly faces multiple charges of coercing five minors into sex acts and multiple charges related to the production of child pornography. He, McDavid and Brown were also charged with receiving child pornography in an alleged effort to recover missing tapes that allegedly show Kelly engaging in sexual acts with minors. Kelly and McDavid also face obstruction of justice charges related to allegations that they paid people who knew about Kelly’s alleged abuse and attempted to obstruct the 2008 child pornography investigation into Kelly. All three men have pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

Kelly’s defense attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, tried to refute the prosecution’s case in her opening statement, saying it “really hinged on the testimony of liars, extortionists, people who trafficked in pornography”. Although Bonjean acknowledged that “Mr. Kelly is flawed… It’s important when the government wants to portray him as a monster that you remember we’re talking about a human being. We implore you to keep these emotions under control.

Kelly’s trial in Chicago began just over a month after he was sentenced to 30 years in prison after being found guilty on all counts of racketeering and sex trafficking against him in a federal case in Brooklyn the last year.

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