Nicki Minaj’s Brother Sentenced To Prison For Repeatedly Raping Stepdaughter

Jelani Maraj was accused in 2015 of routinely raping his stepdaughter, beginning when she was 11 years old.

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More than two years after his conviction, Nicki Minaj’s brother Jelani Maraj has been sentenced to serve at least 25 years in prison for repeatedly raping his stepdaughter.

Maraj, 40, appeared in court on Monday morning in Long Island, New York, where State Supreme Court Justice Robert McDonald sentenced him to 25 years to life in prison, PEOPLE reports, citing an unnamed source with the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office.

Judge Robert McDonald tore into Maraj during sentencing, stating that, in his view, Maraj “ruined this child,” according to Page Six.

“You raped this child. You raped her over and over again,” McDonald said.

Maraj, who was first arrested in 2015, was found guilty in 2017 of predatory sexual assault, The Guardian reports. He did not take the stand in his own defense during the trial, but the victim, who was 14 then but 11 when the abuse started, said that, while Maraj was married to her mother, he would routinely rape her, calling her his “puppet” and telling her that she had “no say” in what happened to her, according to Page Six.

Jelani Maraj Ap

She also stated that, on one occasion, her younger brother walked in on an instance of sexual assault as it was happening.

Maraj’s lawyer claimed that the allegations were lies thought up by the child’s mother in order to get money from Maraj’s famous sister, according to The Guardian. However, the mother denied as much; her former lawyer, James R Ray III, admitted on the stand to asking for a $25 million settlement soon after Maraj was initially taken into custody, but said that his client was not made aware of what he was asking and “was not involved,” the outlet reports. She later fired him.

Maraj maintained his innocence during sentencing, according to Page Six.

“I’d like to apologize for the pain that I caused. I had an excessive drinking problem,” he said before reportedly asking the court for “mercy.”

After the sentence was handed down, Maraj’s lawyer David Schwartz said that he and his client plan to appeal, the outlet reports.

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