R. Kelly pleads not guilty to reworked US abuse charges
R&B singer R. Kelly on Thursday pleaded not guilty to an updated US federal indictment that includes sex abuse allegations involving a new accuser.
Attorney Steve Greenberg entered the plea on the 53-year-old singer’s behalf in Chicago federal court. Kelly stood next to Greenberg in orange jail garb, holding his hands behind his back.
The 13-count superseding indictment was unsealed last month and includes multiple counts accusing Kelly of child pornography. It is largely the same as the original indictment — which also had 13 counts — but includes a reference to a new accuser, referred to only as “Minor 6.”
Prosecutors said during the hearing Thursday that it was likely there would be another superseding indictment against Kelly in the coming weeks, though they provided no details.
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Kelly, who has denied ever abusing anyone, faces several dozen counts of state and federal sexual misconduct charges in Illinois, Minnesota and New York, from sexual assault to heading a racketeering scheme aimed at supplying Kelly with girls.
The Grammy-award winning musician was jailed in July and has been awaiting trial at a Chicago federal jail a block from the courthouse where he attends pretrial hearings. He has participated in hearings in his New York case by video.
The federal charges in Chicago accuse Kelly of filming himself having sex with underage girls and of paying off potential witnesses in his 2008 trial — at which he was acquitted — to get them to change their stories.
Also Thursday, U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber moved the trial date from April to Oct. 13.