R. Kelly faces sentencing day in sex trafficking case

Singer R. Kelly was convicted for racketeering and other charges in connection with recruiting women and children for sex and could face life in prison.
3:13 | 06/29/22

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Transcript for R. Kelly faces sentencing day in sex trafficking case
WELCOME BACK. SINGER R. KELLY IS BEING SENTENCED TODAY AND COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON. HE WAS CONVICTED OF RACKETEERING AND OTHER CHARGES IN CONNECTION WITH RECRUITING WOMEN AND CHILDREN FOR SEX. HIS ATTORNEYS ASKING FOR FEWER THAN 14 YEARS IN PRISON. CITING HIS TRAUMATIC CHILDHOOD. LET'S BRING IN SENIOR VATICAN REPORTER AND KATERSKY AND ABC NEWS CONTRIBUTOR MANAGING PARTNER FOR THE CUP -- AS WELL AS ABC NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND SIRIUS XM RADIO HOST MIKE MUSE FOR A LITTLE BIT MORE ON THIS. ERIN, I WANT TO START WITH YOU. WHAT CAN WE EXPECT FROM THE COURT PROCEEDINGS TODAY? WELL WE HEAR FROM ACCUSERS? >> WE ARE GOING TO HEAR FROM THE ACCUSERS. THEY FILED UNDER LAW ENFORCEMENT ESCORT INTO BROOKLYN FEDERAL COURT WHERE R. KELLY IS FACING SENTENCING. PROSECUTORS WANT HIM TO SPEND AT LEAST 25 YEARS IF NOT MORE IN PRISON. AND IN 55, THAT COULD PUT HIM IN PRISON FOR MUCH OF THE REST OF HIS LIFE. THE DEFENSE IS ASKING FOR NO MORE THAN TEN YEARS SAYING HE HAD A TRAUMATIC CHILDHOOD HIMSELF. BUT IF YOU LISTEN TO PROSECUTORS, THEY SAID THAT R. KELLY PUT HIS FAME AND WEALTH TO WORK. TO LURE WOMEN AND GIRLS INTO HIS ORBIT. AND THAT HE SUBJECTED THEM TO PSYCHOLOGICAL MANIPULATION AND PHYSICAL AND SEXUAL ABUSE. THE VICTIMS ARE GOING TO SAY HOW THAT IMPACTED THEIR LIVES. MANY OF THEM MAY MAKE STATEMENTS INSIDE A COURT AFTERWARDS. AND THIS IS AFTER 30 EARS OF SEXUAL MISCONDUCT ALLEGATIONS THAT HAVE DOGGED R. KELLY. THIS WILL BE THE FIRST TIME DIANA HE'S ACTUALLY BEEN PUNISHED FOR THEM. >> SHAUNA, THIS ARGUMENT BY DEFENSE ATTORNEY THAT HE HAD A TRAUMATIC CHILDHOOD, HOW LIKELY IS THAT TO HAVE AN IMPACT ON THE SENTENCING? >> SO THESE ARGUMENTS ABOUT HIS CHILDHOOD ARE WHAT WE CALL MITIGATION. THEY'RE MITIGATION FACTORS THAT ARE INTENDED TO PERSUADE THE COURAGE TO LOOK TOWARDS THE MORE LENIENT SENTENCE THAN THEY WOULD OTHERWISE LOOK AT. THEY CAN BE PERSUASIVE BUT IN THE CASE OF THIS MAGNITUDE, WHERE WE'RE TALKING ABOUT 30 YEARS AND OF THESE LEVEL OF CHARGES, I AM CURIOUS TO SEE HOW IT'S GOING TO FALL ON THE COURT BECAUSE I DON'T THINK IT'S GOING TO HAVE THE LEVEL OF IMPACT THAT THE DEFENSE IS HOPING FOR. >> AND MIKE, R. KELLY WAS SOME OF THE BIGGEST STARS IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY. THESE ALLEGATIONS AGAINST HIM GO BACK DECADES. HOW MUCH OF AN IMPACT DID SURVIVING R. KELLY, THE DOCUMENTARY, PLAY IN GETTING HERE? >> SURVIVING R. KELLY FOR ME WAS THE KEY INDICATOR THAT ALLOWED US TO GET HERE. NEVER BEFORE HAD WE SEEN ALL THE ACCUSERS TOGETHER, VICTIMS TOGETHER AT ONE TIME TELLING THEIR STORY OVER A SIX-PART SERIES. AND WHEN YOU HEAR THAT OVER AND OVER, SIX PARTS, YOU CANNOT HELP BUT BE MOVED BY THEIR STORIES. YOU CANNOT HELP BE BY THE PAIN. YOU CAN'T HELP BUT BE MOVED BY WHAT TRAUMA THEY WERE EXPERIENCING. AND AS A RESULT OF THAT, IT MADE EVERYBODY PAUSE AND QUESTIONED EVERY CONSUMER, EVERY ARTISTS, EVERY FAN IN TERMS OF HOW WE'VE EVER EXPERIENCED IN R. KELLY ALBUM AND SONG AND MADE US SAY SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE. >> AARON, WHAT HAPPENS AFTER TODAY? IS THIS THE END OF THE R. KELLY CASE OR COULD THERE BE MORE TO COME? >> THERE'S MORE TO COME BECAUSE HE FACES ADDITIONAL CHARGES IN OTHER STATES AND THE DEFENSE IS ALSO SAYING THAT R. KELLY HIMSELF, AFTER NOT TEST

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