A bench warrant has been issued for R. Kelly after he missed a court date in Minnesota this week.
The 52-year-old singer, born Robert Sylvester Kelly, is already in custody in Illinois on various federal charges, but he is facing additional charges in Minnesota related to allegations that he gave a 17-year-old girl money in 2001 to dance nude for him, CBS Minnesota reports. He is also alleged to have touched the girl in a sexual manner during that incident.
Kelly did not appear at a hearing on Thursday related to the prostitution charges, nor did an attorney representing him show up, the outlet reports.
Senior Hennepin County Attorney Judith Cole said during the brief hearing that a lawyer representing Kelly, who has been charged with two counts of engaging in prostitution with a person under 18, had not reached out to her office or filed a certificate of representation acknowledging that they’d be representing Kelly in the case, CNN reports.
Steve Greenberg, a lawyer representing Kelly in a number of other cases, took to Twitter to address claims that the singer failed to appear, according to the outlet.
“I was not served with any notice of court proceedings, nor was he. I did not resist his appearance, nor did he,” he reportedly wrote.
Judge Jay Quam, who issued the arrest warrant, said that it would be served when Kelly “was able to return to Minnesota to face the charges,” according to CBS Minnesota.
Kelly, who is facing numerous sex-related charges in both Illinois and New York, is being held in the federal Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago, where he will likely remain until his trial date of April 27, 2020, CNN reports. Kelly has maintained his innocence.
Prosecutors in Illinois told the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office that they would not turn over Kelly until the cases he’s currently embroiled in are settled, according to CNN.
However, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman has said that he’d accept the Minnesota case never being tried, as long as Kelly is convicted of the crimes he allegedly committed in other states, CBS Minnesota reports.
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