R Kelly arrested on sex trafficking charges

R Kelly leaves a Chicago courtroom after a hearing in June on earlier charges.

R Kelly leaves a Chicago courtroom after a hearing in June on earlier charges. Photo: Getty

R&B singer R Kelly has been arrested for federal sex trafficking charges, multiple media outlets have confirmed.

Kelly is expected to be brought to New York for trial, following his arrest in Chicago by NYPD detectives and Homeland Security agents.

The arrest also includes a 13-count indictment, some of which are related to child pornography and obstruction of justice.

Kelly has been at the centre of several sexual abuse allegations for nearly two decades, with some accusations dating back to the late 1990s.

More recently, Kelly was charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse in February, only to be hit with 11 more counts of sexual assault and sexual abuse in May.

Four of the new counts charged Kelly with aggravated criminal sexual assault – a Class X felony, which carries six to 30 years in prison if the accused is convicted. Three also accused the singer of sexually abusing a victim between the ages of 13 and 16 in 2010.

The singer previously pleaded not guilty to the first series of allegations, for which he was bailed on a $US1 million ($1.43 million) bond.

Kelly faced similar charges in 2000, when he was charged with participating in child pornography after a video surfaced allegedly showing him having sex with an underage woman.

Kelly was also the main focus of Lifetime’s recent documentary series Surviving R. Kelly, which resulted in the singer being dropped by his long-time record label, RCA, in addition to issues with booking concerts.

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