R&B singer R. Kelly is currently on trial for accusations of abuse, sexual exploitation of women and minors, and racketeering. R. Kelly is facing federal charges in New York, federal charges in Illinois, and state charges in Illinois and Minnesota. The latest trial has been ongoing since August 2021. So far, five accusers have taken the stand at trial. Four women and one man testified on the abuse and advances made by R. Kelly when they were underage.
While the trial is current, allegations against R. Kelly are not new. As early as the 1990s, the media has covered R. Kelly’s misconduct. R. Kelly made headlines when he married 15-year-old singer Aaliyah in 1994. And that was just the beginning of other news coverage about the allegations.
If you want to learn more about R. Kelly’s trial, here are some podcast episodes:
On the “Will R. Kelly Survivors Finally Get Justice” episode of Slate’s “What Next,” the trial and R. Kelly’s previous lawsuits and scandals are described. Jim DeRogatis joins the hosts of “What Next,” as he has reported on R. Kelly’s legal issues, accusers, and victims over the years. He first heard of the abuse via fax message when working as a pop critic at the Chicago Sun Times.
The message had information about girls who stated they’d been abused by R. Kelly, and Jim has investigated ever since. Jim knows of 48 women who have claimed alleged abuse and believes more people will eventually speak up. Jim said R. Kelly used his celebrity status to coerce and abuse women. People have sent incriminating videos over the years, and he turned them over to the police department. Civil lawsuits were filed. Jim is also the co-host of “Sound Opinions.” He wrote a book to chronicle the timeline in, Soulless: The Case Against R. Kelly.
Holding Court with Eboni K. Williams
Eboni K. Williams is an attorney and TV personality who covers legal topics from the headlines on her podcast. On this episode, she speaks with co-host Dustin Ross about R. Kelly’s case. Eboni unpacks R. Kelly’s case and the charges he is facing in the first of his federal charges. His hearings are taking place in Brooklyn, New York. R. Kelly is in court for counts that include racketeering and sex trafficking over state lines. Eboni broke down federal versus state jurisdictions and how R. Kelly is facing both federal and state charges.
Eboni and Dustin spoke about the people testifying, many of which were aspiring musicians. Some of these people he met at the same McDonald’s in Chicago, where R. Kelly was said to have hung out in the afternoons. To learn more, Eboni encourages everyone to read the Cook County complaints and indictments that are public record. “Holding Court with Eboni K. Williams” is presented by The Black Effect Network.
Atlanta Attorney Marsha Mignott and Entrepreneur Dana Smith host Akita Way Productions’ “Diva Court.” After speaking about current topics like vaccines, they get into R. Kelly’s trial. Listen in around the 29-minute mark for R. Kelly news. Marsha and Dana describe R. Kelly’s federal racketeering charges, a statute designed for bringing down large groups of people at one time, like the mafia. Racketeering targets people who have conspired together to create crimes.
The hosts also speak about R. Kelly’s previous cases and women’s recent testimonies at trial so far. In the podcast, the hosts describe one of the woman’s statements: when one woman first met R. Kelly, she said she told him she was 19 when she was actually 16. When she told R. Kelly her real age, at trial, she said he told her to “act 21.” She said they both continued the relationship. The hosts share their opinions about the testimonies and speak about R. Kelly’s marriage to Aaliyah.
What A Day
Crooked Media’s “What A Day” explains an overview on R. Kelly’s trial at the 4:49-minute mark of this episode after sharing COVID news. After decades of accusations and investigations, R. Kelly is at the first of his federal trials in Brooklyn, New York for charges of abuse, racketeering, kidnapping, forced labor, and violating The Mann Act, a law that prohibits transporting people between states for prostitution.
This episode recapped 2017’s Buzzfeed exposé about women who said they were being held by R. Kelly in a cult against their free will. With the release in 2019 of filmmaker Dream Hampton’s docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly, explaining how Kelly’s team concealed and enabled his behavior, more people have come forward. R. Kelly was subsequently dropped from his label. The series won awards. The new charges were announced shortly after the docuseries aired. The trial is just occurring now after the pandemic. R. Kelly has had a history of firing and hiring a rotation of new lawyers. This episode also explores the R. Kelly’s new charges are different from 2008’s.
While this episode aired in 2019, the information presented in “The Daily’s” “Prosecuting R. Kelly” episode is still relevant. When Chicago’s top prosecutor Kim Foxx asked women to speak out with information or allegations on R. Kelly, New York Times correspondent John Eligon interviewed Kim on this episode. She spoke about her background in Chicago.
This episode explored the #TimesUp movement, and how the public opinion of R. Kelly has changed over time. After the docuseries aired, Kim’s office was bombarded with attention and questions about R. Kelly. They wanted her to do something. She explained to people that in order for the criminal justice system to be involved and take action, witnesses and victims had to come forward to start a case. Kim held a press conference and called upon victims, or anyone with information, to contact her office.
The Surviving R. Kelly Aftershow Podcast
Afterbuzz TV’s podcast recapped episodes of the 6-part docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly. Victims and accusers were interviewed in the docuseries, and detail their abuse and abuser. In case you did not watch the series, this podcast’s in-depth analysis dives into R. Kelly and the people involved will inform you about details that will likely be reported in the trial.