The case against R. Kelly continues to build. Three months after the R&B singer was charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse by Chicago authorities, those authorities have announced an additional 11 counts of sexual assault and abuse against an underage victim.
The Associated Press reports that Kelly has now been charged with: Four counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, two counts of criminal sexual assault by force, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, and three counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, all against a victim who was at least 13 and younger than 17 at the time the alleged abuse occurred.
The initial 10 charges in February described four victims, three of them underage at the time of the alleged abuse. One of those victims was identified in court documents as “J.P.” The victim in the new charges is also referred to as “J.P.” Though prosecutors did not clarify in their filing whether these referred to the same person, Kelly’s attorney Steve Greenberg thinks so. Greenberg, who has maintained his client’s innocence of all accusations, said in a statement to EW that this means the new charges are just a restatement of the previously announced ones.
“These ‘new’ charges are not really new — they are the same conduct, just charged differently, same alleged victim, same time frame, same facts,” Greenberg said. “There are still four cases, not five. And we still expect the same results.”
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to EW’s request for comment.
Kelly previously went to trial in 2008 on child pornography charges, of which he was acquitted. Interest in his alleged misconduct was revived recently by the “Mute R. Kelly” campaign and the Lifetime documentary series Surviving R. Kelly. Jim DeRogatis, the Chicago journalist who first reported on accusations against Kelly in the early 2000s, has a new book out in June called Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly that provides an overview of the stories from then until now.
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