R. Kelly Chicago Federal Trial Will Revisit 2008 Accusations That Ended In Acquittal

By Sonia Moghe, CNN

(CNN) — Fourteen years after R. Kelly was acquitted of child pornography charges in Illinois, he is back in his hometown facing more federal charges that involve some of the tapes and victims from his previous state trial.

Kelly, who was convicted of racketeering and sex trafficking charges at a Brooklyn federal trial in September and sentenced to 30 years in prison, will now face charges at the Chicago federal trial that he sexually abused five minors in the late 1990s and created multiple explicit videos with four of them.

The trial will center around child pornography and obstruction counts and includes two former associates of Kelly’s as his co-defendants. Derrel McDavid was charged with child pornography and obstruction, and Milton “June” Brown faces one count of conspiracy to receive child pornography. Kelly, McDavid and Brown each pleaded not guilty to the charges. CNN has reached out to their attorneys for comment.

Prosecutors are expected to show multiple tapes of child pornography allegedly involving Kelly having sex with underage girls. The public and media will not be permitted to view the tapes, as they are considered contraband, but jurors will.

US District Judge Harry Leinenweber has questioned nearly 100 prospective jurors for the trial beginning Monday, and may select a jury and begin opening arguments as early as Tuesday afternoon. Twelve jurors and six alternates are expected to be selected.

Kelly worked closely with McDavid and Brown at the height of his career in the 1990s.

McDavid worked for Kelly as a business manager from 1991 until about 2014, according to an indictment, which claims that part of his job was to “protect Kelly’s image, reputation and assets” against active and potential criminal investigations, as well as lawsuits filed by people who claimed they were victims of sexual abuse by Kelly.

Prosecutors allege that Kelly and McDavid worked with others to pay victims and witnesses to ensure they wouldn’t cooperate with law enforcement and “cover up evidence” including alleged child porn videos involving Kelly.

Brown worked for Kelly from 1997 to 2018, and prosecutors allege that he, Kelly and McDavid conspired to receive multiple alleged child pornography tapes.

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