UPDATED: 7:24 a.m. EDT, March 6 — Gayle King‘s exclusive interview with R. Kelly aired Wednesday on CBS This Morning, shining a brighter light on the extent that the disgraced signer was going to defend himself. Kelly, who is facing 10 counts of sex abuse, insisted all of his accusers are lying and implausibly painted himself as the true victim.
“They are lying on me,” Kelly told King in a face-to-face sit-down interview that was recorded Tuesday.
He also denied having “had sex with anyone under the age of 17,” something that seems curious considering his illegal marriage to singer Aaliyah, who was 15 at the time of their wedding.
Read the full transcript from the interview by clicking here.
Disgraced singer R. Kelly has finally publicly addressed his recent indictment and arrest for allegedly sexually abusing multiple underage girls. And while his interview with CBS News was a major coup for the TV station, his words were sure to leave fans, former fans and neutral observers all wanting to know more.
After telling “CBS This Morning” co-host Gayle King that he would not talk about his “ongoing case,” he pointed to his previous acquittal on similar charges as a reason he shouldn’t be charged for anything this time around.
“I beat my case,” he told King in response to a question about whether his past with underage girls, like his illegal marriage to then-15-year-old singer Aaliyah, was relevant. “When you beat something, you beat it.”
He continued: “You can’t double-jeopardy me like that. You can’t. It’s not fair. It’s not fair to nobody.”
That sentiment all but echoed one from his lawyer, Steve Greenberg, who told reporters the night Kelly turned himself in that he didn’t believe any of the women who have accused the singer of an array of sex charges, including child sex abuse. He also said the charges shouldn’t apply to his client because they were “the same thing” as the child porn charges Kelly was acquitted of in 2008. That, Greenberg said, constituted the Double Jeopardy Clause in the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Greenberg said that the evidence prosecutors have built their case on stems from a videotape allegedly containing footage of Kelly having sex with the same 14-year-old girl that he was accused of having sex with on video during his trial from more than a decade ago. Only now, Greenberg said, now prosecutors were charging “something else, but it’s the same thing and double jeopardy should apply.”
Kelly was arrested Feb. 23 after surrendering to Chicago police following his indictment on the same day for 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse. After spe3nding the weekend in jail because he arguably had trouble paying the $100,000 for bail, a woman friend of his posted his bond.
In the CBS interview, scheduled to be televised Wednesday morning, Kelly adamantly denied he was guilty.
“Not true,” Kelly said when King asked him about “the other cases where women have come forward and said, ‘R. Kelly had sex with me when I was under the age of 18. R. Kelly was abusive to me emotionally and physically and verbally. R. Kelly took me in a black room where unspeakable things happened.’ This is what they’re saying about you.”
The latest charges against Kelly stem from attorney Michael Avenatti giving a pair of purported child porn videos that featured the singer. Avenatti said he was hired last April in connection to multiple allegations of Kelly sexually assaulting minors. He claimed to have videotaped evidence, which, despite their similarities, were apparently not the same video footage that got Kelly indicted in 2002 — and acquitted in 2008 — for child porn.
Interest in seeing Kelly charged for his alleged crimes came at the beginning of the year when the bombshell docuseries “Surviving R. Kelly” aired with several women accusing him of sexually abusing them when they were underage.