The disgraced R&B superstar R. Kelly is going to the court on Friday in order to address several issues involving his trial for the ten counts of sexual abuse that was charged against him. Probably the most important of these issues to be resolved relative the case is the request from the lawyers of R. Kelly to see the video surveillance footage that the prosecution said to have proved that sexual abuse was committed by R. Kelly.
Last month, the legal representatives of the women alleging Kelly with sexual abuse as well as prosecutors of the case said that they hold fresh and strong evidence against R. Kelly. According to Cook County Prosecutor Kimberly Foxx, the alleged abuses took place across twelve years from 1998 – 2010.
New evidence has surfaced against R. Kelly including a video where he was caught during the act of the abuse and a t-shirt submitted by one of the victims containing Kelly’s DNA. Foxx alleges that the singer also spat on his victims during the attacks.
Kelly’s legal team requested to see the aforementioned video tapes so that they can review it and prepare a defense.
The tapes were handed to the prosecutors by Michael Avenatti, who represents some people who are connected in the R. Kelly case, including the alleged victims and the parents of a woman currently in a relationship with R. Kelly who they say has been brainwashed by him.
In an earlier statement, R. Kelly’s lawyer, Greenberg dismissed the claims against the singer saying “all the woman are lying.” However, Michael Avenatti pushed back to Greenberg and called him ‘outrageous’ and ‘completely unprofessional’.
TRIP TO DUBAI
Another topic to be discussed on Friday’s court appearance by Kelly is his request to be allowed to fly to Dubai to perform.
In a motion filed by Kelly to a Chicago court last Wednesday, he requested the judge to allow him to travel to the Middle East to perform several concerts, citing his struggle to get a booking in the United States following his arrest in February.
According to the court document, R. Kelly is set to do three to five concerts in the Arab Gulf country but there was no venue specified in his request. Kelly claims that he struggled to pay child support, legal fees, and other bills. Kelly blamed the cancellation of Illinois concerts, a contract with a record company , and streaming services removing his songs.
The request follows his bond condition in his sexual abuse case, Kelly is required to stay in Illinois unless he secure an out-of-state travel from a court. This condition, as claimed by Kelly, has hurt his finances because he can’t find bookings. Furthermore, as part of the bond, the talented singer is ordered to surrender his passport and was prohibited from making contact with anyone below 18-years-old.
“This is someone who should be wealthy at this stage of his career,” Greenberg said in a previous statement to reporters.
Greenberg blamed ‘mismanagement,’ ‘hangers-on,’ and ‘bad deals’ for the financial situation of Kelly, who will remain in custody at the Cook County Jail until he pays off his bail.
Michael Avenatti said that the courts should not allow Kelly’s abroad travel. He posted on his social media accounts that Kelly’s attorney has previously said that there were no concerts scheduled for Kelly and that he “doesn’t even like to fly.” If the courts would allow him to go to Dubai, said Avenatti, it will be a “travesty” because he will never return.
“Kelly’s attorney, Steve Greenberg, previously told the court at the bail hearing a month ago that there were no concerts scheduled and that “Kelly doesn’t even like to fly.” It will be a travesty if this motion is granted – he will never return,” Avenatti wrote on Twitter.
Interestingly, the United States does not have an extradition treaty with the United Arab Emirates and it is very convenient for Kelly to go to Dubai now that he is facing ten counts of sexual abuse charges. However, a recent court filing from Kelly claimed that the UAE would not want to harm their relations with the U.S. by harbouring R. Kelly in Dubai.
The court hearing for Kelly’s requests is scheduled to take place in Chicago at 9:45 a.m. local time.