R. Kelly is now using his debt as a reason why he should be released from jail amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
Attorneys for the disgraced singer have argued the singer’s risk of contracting the deadly virus has increased after six inmates at the Chicago Metropolitan Correctional Center have tested positive for COVID-19.
R. Kelly claims he is not a flight risk because he owes the IRS $2 million and the $200,000 he received in royalties will be divided up between his agents and managers, and others.
Attorney Michael Leonard submitted a letter to the court on April 19 that read in part:
The monies the Government claims Mr. Kelly has access to are not the kind of funds that would present an opportunity to flee, let alone live a life covertly in exile.
It similarly ignores the fact that the current environment of restricted traveling commercial activities would make it that much more difficult than before, and albeit impossible for a celebrity like Mr. Kelly, to flee from prosecution.
Prosecutors also argued that it is “disingenuous” for Kelly to say he has “no means to go anywhere” and that the singer still continues to have “significant network of individuals to assist him” on the outside and to do his bidding including posting on social media in support of him and overtly trying to intimidate his accusers.
Should R. Kelly be released?