A Chicago judge on Thursday, February 23, 2023, sentenced R. Kelly whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly to 20 years in prison after he was convicted of child sex abuse, according to the Associated Press.
He will serve almost all of it simultaneously with a previous sentence for crimes in New York, and largely avoid extra prison time
The 56-year-old R&B singer will serve 19 years of his latest sentence concurrently with a 30-year New York sentence he received in September 2021 for sex trafficking and racketeering. He will serve the remaining year of the new sentence after those 30 years are up.
Prosecutors previously recommended to U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber in Chicago that Kelly serve the two sentences back to back, which would have effectively put Kelly behind bars for life.
The AP reported that Kelly’s attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, argued in court on Thursday that the prosecutors’ recommendation would have been “overkill.
A Chicago jury convicted Kelly in September of multiple child pornography and child sex abuse charges. This was the second federal trial concerning more than three decades of sexual assault allegations against him. They date back to the 1990s when critics deemed him the “king of R&B” for becoming the most commercially successful male artist working in the genre.