American singer R Kelly has been found guilty of sex charges after his sex trafficking trial ended on Monday.
The ‘I believe I can fly’ singer will be sentenced on May 4 and he could spend the rest of his life behind bars.
This is coming after he was found guilty of exploiting his superstar status to run a scheme to sexually abuse women and children over two decades.
According to BBC, Eleven accusers, nine women, and two men took the stand over the six-week trial to describe sexual humiliation and violence at his hands.
After two days of deliberation, the jury found Kelly guilty on all the charges he was facing.
Sentencing is due on May 4 and he could spend the rest of his life behind bars.
The jury found Kelly, whose full name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, as the ringleader of a violent and coercive scheme that lured women and children for him to sexually abuse.
The singer was also found to have trafficked women between different US states and produced child pornography.
Along with eight counts of sex trafficking, Kelly was found guilty of racketeering – a charge normally used against organised crime associations.
During the trial, prosecutors detailed how his managers, security guards, and other entourage members worked to assist him in his criminal enterprise.
One woman who testified that Kelly imprisoned, drugged, and raped her said in a written statement after the verdict that she had “been hiding” from Kelly due to threats made against her since she went public with her accusations.
“I’m ready to start living my life free from fear and to start the healing process,” added the woman, identified in court as Sonja.
Many of the allegations heard in the trial were first laid out in the 2019 documentary Surviving R Kelly.
Victims were sometimes selected from his concert audiences or were enticed to join him after being offered help with their fledgling music careers after chance encounters with the singer.
But after joining his entourage, they found that they were subjected to strict rules and aggressively punished if they violated what his team had dubbed “Rob’s rules.”