R Kelly's sex trafficking trial pushed back due to coronavirus

R. Kelly’s racketeering and sex trafficking trial has pushed back due to coronavirus.

The singer, who is currently being held in a Chicago jail on charges of sex trafficking, racketeering and child pornography, was set to stand trial for separate sex offences in New York City in July. However, the start of the trial has now been postponed and will kick begin on September 29.

As Page Six reports, Brooklyn federal Judge Ann Donnelly confirmed the date change on a conference call yesterday (April 16).

Kelly’s attorney Douglas Anton has since cast scepticism over the new trial date, believing that it does not give the singer’s legal team enough time to assemble their defence.

Anton said: “It’s impossible that that date is going to happen.”

But Donnelly has said she is keen to see Kelly face trial in September, ahead of his trial in Chicago in October where he faces the charges in Chicago.

R Kelly  Credit: Getty

Last week, Kelly was also denied bail by Donnelly after he tried to secure a temporary release because of the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

She ruled that the singer must remain in custody at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago, Illinois, where he is currently being held.

“While I am sympathetic to the defendant’s understandable anxiety about Covid-19, he has not established compelling reasons warranting his release,” Judge Donnelly wrote in her opinion, adding: “at present, there are no confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the MCC in Chicago.”

She added that the Bureau of Prisons had taken measures to ensure the safety of prisoners and that Kelly was not among the “at risk” groups identified by authorities.