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A Chicago judge set R. Kelly’s bail at $1 million as the singer/producer extraordinaire faced a courtroom for the first time Saturday after he was charged with 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse.
The Judge John Lyke Jr., who presided over the bail hearing for one of the supposed victims, Empire actor Jussie Smollett earlier in the week, set the $1 million bail, or $250,000 for each of the four women involved in the charges against Kelly. The singer needs to put up $100,000 to bond out prior to his trial.
Amidst all the controversies, Kelly’s lawyer Steven Greenberg argued for a lower bail, stating that his client was having financial difficulties, according to CNN report. Kelly was also ordered to give up his passport; “Contrary to the song, he doesn’t like to fly,” Greenberg said, making an “I Believe I Can Fly” joke. Kelly and his associates were also told to have no contact with the alleged victims, while Kelly must only have relations with women 18 years and older.
“He’s going to be vindicated on all of these charges,” Greenberg said. “One by one, if it has to be.”
In the indictment against Kelly obtained by Rolling Stone, the singer has been accused of “sexual penetration” of multiple women “at least 13 years of age but under 17 years of age.” The age of consent in Illinois is 17 years old.
At a press conference Friday, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx detailed the charges against Kelly: Four charges stem from Kelly’s alleged incidents with an underage girl initialed “H.W.” between May 1998 and May 1999. Two counts were drawn from “R.L.,” who, while underage, had sexual encounters with Kelly between September 1998 to September 2001. The most recent counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, from May 2009 to January 2010, are “J.P.,” who was also underage.
“L.C.” is the fourth victim and the one count of sexual abuse stems from a February 18th, 2003 incident, with Kelly accused of “transmission of semen on any part of the victim’s body for sexual gratification.”