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After R.Kelly Asks To Strike and Dismiss Count 1 Now EDNY Judge Donnelly Denies It

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon Song
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FEDERAL COURTHOUSE, May 21 – There was an R.Kelly arraignment amid the COVID-19 pandemic on April 30 before U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York Magistrate Judge Cheryl L. Pollak. It was short - not guilty plea - but revealed that the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago has a new medical report on R.Kelly that may become part of a renewed bail application. Inner City Press live tweeted it here; more on Patreon here.

 Now on May 21, this: "The defendant is awaiting trial on charges of racketeering in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1962(c) and 1963, three counts of Mann Act transportation to engage in illegal sexual activity in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2421(a), three counts of Mann Act coercion and enticement to engage in illegal sexual activity in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2422(a), one count of Mann Act coercion of a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2422(b), and one count of Mann Act transportation of a minor with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2423(a). (ECF No. 43.) Currently before the Court are the defendant’s motions to dismiss the racketeering charge and to strike the allegations that cite Section 2307 of the New York Public Health Law. (ECF Nos. 41, 42). The Government opposes. (ECF Nos. 46, 47.) For the reasons that follow, the motions are denied." Full decision on Patreon here.

  US letter and analysis on Patreon here.

 On April 30, R.Kelly was on the phone from the MCC in Chicago to be arraigned

EDNY Judge Cheryl L. Pollak asked him, I take it you speak English?

R.Kelly said, clearly, Yes.

The judge asked the prosecutor, Which are the new charges?

 The Assistant US Attorney after her computer froze then unfroze said, 2, 3, 4 & 5.

  Defense lawyer Anton of Hackensack, New Jersey turned it over to Illinois lawyer Mr. Leonard.

  The judge said, It is impossible for Mr Kelly to be transferred back & forth to New York given Covid-19.

Mr Leonard: We enter a plea of not guilty.

The judge asked, Mr. Leonard, you have no concern if he understands the charges?

Leonard: That is correct.

Judge: You are not making a bail application?

Leonard: Not at this time. There is an issue we wish to raise to you.  The MCC (Chicago) lawyer Mr. Standeser-Malott told us they have a new medical report on Mr. Kelly. We'd like to have it ordered, to be part of a bail application later.

Judge: OK, everyone stay safe. And it was over. More on Patreon here.

On April 16 before EDNY District Judge Ann M. Donnelly, Inner City Press live tweeted it,
here. More on Patreon here.

 Now on April 21, the prosecutors have written to Judge Donnelly: "Re: United States v. Robert Sylvester Kelly  Criminal Docket No. 19-286 (S-3) (AMD)          Dear Judge Donnelly:   On April 20, 2020, counsel for the defendant Robert Kelly filed a letter with the Court indicating that he had been advised the night before that an inmate on the defendant’s floor “had tested positive for Covid 19 and been taken to the hospital.”  ECF Docket No. 59.  The letter further indicated that “counsel had reached out to the correctional center this morning to verify this information but as of yet have not heard back.”  Id.  Following receipt of defense counsel’s letter, the government forwarded the letter to legal counsel for the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago, Illinois (“MCC Chicago”) and sought confirmation regarding whether the information in the letter was accurate.  Yesterday, legal counsel for MCC Chicago confirmed that an inmate on the defendant’s floor had been taken to the hospital and tested positive for COVID-19."

again opposed any release for R.Kelly (amid the release, for example, Tekashi #6ix9ine), stating "it is disingenuous for the defendant to suggest that he has “no means to go anywhere.” (Mot. at 3). He continues to have a significant network of individuals available to assist him. Indeed, many of those individuals attempt to do the defendant’s bidding by regularly posting and appearing in videos on the internet and publishing on social media in support of the defendant and overtly trying to intimidate the defendant’s accusers. Moreover, the defendant still has the financial means to flea and commit obstruction. In the first quarter of 2020 alone, the defendant received over $200,000 in royalty proceeds."

    There was an indefinitely postponement, but for a September jury questionnaire, of R.Kelly's previously scheduled July 7 EDNY trial on charges of racketeering, sexual exploitation of a child, bribery, kidnapping and forced labor.

   Judge Donnelly asks if R.Kelly had waived his appearance. His lawyer responded that he spoke to Mr. Kelly who was "despondent." 

 Judge Donnelly replied, Let's keep it simple. Did he waive his appearance?   The defense lawyer said, Yes.

     Judge Donnelly said, I think a July trial is unlikely. 

 A lawyer mused that even if the economy is re-opened, it is questionable if people are going to be willing to serve on juries.  

  Judge Donnelly pointed out, Mr. Kelly has to be arraigned on new charges, by video... I don't want to step on anyone's toes out in Chicago. What about April 30? What about questionnaires on September 14? The defense lawyers don't necessarily have to come.     

R.Kelly's lawyer emphasized, We want the New York case to go first.

    Judge Donnelly continued, So two weeks after the questionnaire.

    Lawyer: The 28th is Yom Kippur. So let's do 29th.

    Judge Donnelly asked, Why have you made your bail application to me, when it's about Illinois? I've asked the US to respond. But I'm curious.

  R.Kelly's lawyer quickly said, We could re-file it in Illinois. We didn't want him to be released in Chicago and then for you to jail him.  

  Judge Donnelly said, That could happen.

 [In fairness to some online replies, the reality is if any defendant is subject to two judges' or jurisdictions' detention orders, if the first orders release, the defendant would still be arrested on the second order unless it is removed.]

   Judge Donnelly continued, Anyway, I've asked the government to respond. Let's just go forward. Anything else we need to do today? 

  Counselor Greenberg said, You mentioned April 30 for arraignment by video, but they're not bringing anyone to the court in Chicago.

    Judge Donnelly said, Here in New York, they're setting up video arraignments. I'll look into it. Stay safe and talk to y'all soon. And that was it. Inner City Press will continue to follow and report on the case. It is US v. Robert Sylvester Kelly, a/k/a R. Kelly, EDNY Docket No. 19-cr-286 (AMD).  More on Patreon here.


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