R. Kelly attained weight, dropped money ahead of trial

NEW YORK (AP) — R&B star R. Kelly received excess weight and dropped funds even though he awaits a sex-trafficking demo that commences in earnest following 7 days, his attorneys stated Tuesday at a courtroom listening to.

The revelations arrived as U.S. District Judge Ann M. Donnelly in New York built a series of rulings to slim down what evidence can be shown to jurors. She primarily dominated for prosecutors but stated some evidence will be excluded since it is way too similar to other areas of the case aimed at showing Kelly engaged in racketeering in pursuit of gals and women he could abuse.

The Grammy-winning, multiplatinum-promoting R&B singer is accused of main an business of supervisors, bodyguards and other workforce who aided him recruit women of all ages and ladies for sexual intercourse, often at live shows and other venues. He has pleaded not responsible to racketeering, bribery, coercion, enticement and sexual intercourse trafficking.

Devereaux Cannick, a single of his legal professionals, instructed the decide that Kelly, born Robert Sylvester Kelly, demands to be calculated for new clothes mainly because he’s attained so substantially bodyweight in jail.

And he asked that court docket transcripts be delivered at no expense mainly because Kelly has been unable to do the job for two a long time.

“His cash are depleted,” Cannick said of a customer who left the courtroom immediately after the listening to with his hands cuffed.

“It’s likely to be a very long demo,” Donnelly explained after prosecutors outlined their options to call a lot of witnesses, such as women who say they were sexually abused, physically abused and coerced to do items for Kelly’s pleasure.

The decide stated the witnesses who allege abuse can testify with only their initially name specified to jurors, who will sit in the gallery instead than the jury box simply because of a reconfigured courtroom tied to coronavirus restrictions.

Donnelly also explained she will commonly not permit queries aimed at revealing if any of the females have had mental wellbeing treatment. She mentioned she will not enable the jurors to be told that a person witness had labored as an exotic dancer several years soon after she mentioned she was abused.

Also likely to be excluded from the trial is any testimony about spiritual beliefs or that some of the females had been directed to have sex with 1 another, the judge reported.

Prospective jurors have presently filled out questionnaires aimed at guaranteeing they have no biases that would have an impact on their judgment. They will begin answering queries future Monday.

Kelly, is known for perform together with the 1996 hit “I Feel I Can Fly” and the cult classic “Trapped in the Closet,” a multipart tale of sexual betrayal and intrigue.

Kelly’s sexual intercourse existence has drawn scrutiny since the 1990s, and he also is going through sexual intercourse-connected rates in Illinois and Minnesota. He has pleaded not guilty.

The decide in New York ruled past 7 days that the public and the media will be banned from the courtroom immediately after 12 information businesses questioned that six reporters be permitted inside of mainly because viewing a portion of the courtroom on monitors in two overflow rooms was inadequate and might not constitute an open up proceeding. She cited the coronavirus limits.

As he still left the courthouse Tuesday, Cannick, 1 of Kelly’s lawyers, was asked if the closing of the courtroom may be grounds for attraction if his client is convicted.

He smiled and explained, “If there was a conviction, we’d use each individual error that was made” in an enchantment.