R. Kelly dedicated suicide after being sentenced to 30 years in jail, his lawyer says

Attorney Jennifer Bonjean told CNN she believes the disgraced R&B singer was not a suicide, adding that Kelly had feared being put on a suicide list.

“The irony of putting someone on a suicide watch when they aren’t is that it actually causes more harm,” Bonjean says.

R. Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison for federal fraud and sex trafficking

Kelly, 55, had been placed on suicide watch because he was famous, Bonjean said she was told by prosecutors who spoke to prison officials. CNN has reached out to prosecutors and the Bureau of Prisons to confirm.

“It was punishment for being famous. And it was terrifying,” she said. “Leaving someone on a suicide watch under those conditions is cruel and unusual when they don’t need it.”

Bonjean asked Kelly to email her after he was returned to the federal Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn following Wednesday’s sentencing but never received an email from him, she said. Bonjean added that she did not receive an answer about his condition from the detention center until prosecutors requested information from the facility.

jury Kelly was found guilty last September of nine counts, including one count of fraud and eight counts of violating the Mann Act, a sex trafficking law. Prosecutors from the Eastern District of New York accused Kelly of using his status as a celebrity and a “network of people at his disposal to target girls, boys, and women.” for their own sexual gratification.”
Five-week federal trial in Brooklyn including testimonies from witnesses who said they were sexually and physically abused by Kelly. The court also heard from people related to the disgraced R&B singer’s 1994 marriage to the late singer Aaliyah when she was 15 years old and he became an adult after she believed she was pregnant.

Prosecutors asked the judge to sentence Kelly to more than 25 years behind bars, while his defense attorneys asked for 10 years or less.

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