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Jailed singer R. Kelly may face additional charges after authorities recovered more than 100 electronic devices while carrying out a search warrant, prosecutors said in court this week.
Robert Sylvester Kelly, 53, appeared in court in Chicago on Thursday for an arraignment hearing related to a new indictment unsealed last month, the Associated Press reports. It was during Thursday’s hearing that prosecutor Angel Krull revealed that the government plans to introduce a new accuser and bring new charges against Kelly within weeks after federal agents recovered more than 100 electronic devices, some of which are hard drives, according to the outlet.
Authorities carried out the search warrant at a storage facility in a suburban area near O’Hare Airport that houses Kelly’s equipment, computers, and other items, the singer’s defense attorney said after the hearing, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. However, the unit had already been searched last summer, Kelly’s attorney Steve Greenberg reportedly said, adding that he doesn't believe that investigators will find “anything incriminating.”
In regards to Krull’s plan to add a new accuser to the case, Greenberg stated, “There is no one new. They’re not going to find anyone new. And we’ll go to trial and we’ll challenge the evidence.”
The discovery was part of the reason that the judge ruled on Thursday to delay Kelly’s trial, which was originally slated to begin on April 27, but will now take place on October 13, according to the Associated Press.
Mike Leonard, another attorney representing Kelly, said that the singer, who has been in police custody since July and has maintained his innocence, remains positive, but is “disappointed” with the delay, CNN reports.
The most recent indictment, which was unsealed last month, refers to a new victim known only as “Minor 6,” according to the Associated Press. No new charges were introduced, but the existing ones include child pornography and the sexual exploitation of children.
Kelly is alleged to have met “Minor 6” in 1997 or 1998, when she was 14 or 15 years old, and abused her for around four years, the updated indictment claims, according to a previous CNN report. Another victim, this one known only as Minor 2, was removed from the updated 13-count indictment.
Kelly’s attorney entered a not guilty plea on his behalf during Thursday’s hearing, the Associated Press reports. While Kelly was present and wore an orange jail uniform, he did not speak during the proceedings. His two co-defendants, former employees named Derrel McDavid and Milton Brown, also pleaded not guilty on Thursday; both men are accused of helping Kelly retrieve missing incriminating videos.
The singer, who was famously acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, faces a slew of charges related to sex crimes in multiple jurisdictions, including Chicago and New York. He is currently being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago without bond, according to CNN. His Brooklyn trial, where he faces racketeering claims, is slated to begin on July 7, according to the Sun-Times.
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