R. Kelly Trial

Jury Begins Deliberations

(FROM RETUERS) – After three weeks of testimony, closing arguments concluded on Thursday (June 12) in the R. Kelly child pornography trial and the jury began deliberations. In his closing statements, Cook County Prosecutor Robert Heilingoetter once more showed the jury the videotape he alleges shows Kelly having sex with a teenager as young as 13. Heilingoetter said Kelly preyed on young girls and was clearly the man on the tape.

Defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. countered that the two people having sex on the tape are not who the prosecution say they are (both Kelly and the alleged victim deny it as well), and suggested that the Grammy Award-winning R&B singer is the victim of an extortion plot. Adam showed the jury a modest photo of the alleged victim while saying, ''If you convict R. Kelly, you're calling her a whore.'' Adam went on to say that there is no mole on the man on the tape but merely a glitch that sometimes appears to look like a mole. ''That means it ain't him, and if it ain't him, you can't convict,'' Adam said. The prosecution has called expert witnesses who claim that the mark actually is a mole and that it matches the one on Kelly's back.

Kelly, 41, is charged with 14 counts of videotaping himself having sex with an underage girl. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison. He would also have to register as a sex offender in Illinois. Jury members were sequestered after deliberating for about three hours on Thursday and were ordered to return on Friday morning (June 13). (AP via Yahoo!)

Originally posted Jun 13, 2008