The alleged sex tape showing R. Kelly with an underage girl was played in the singer’s child porn trial on Tuesday (May 20), while jurors and Kelly himself watched on monitors.
According to reports, the jurors sat motionless while the 27-minute homemade video showing a man having sex with a young female, who is naked for most of the recording except for a necklace with a cross dangling from it, was played.
41-year-old Kelly (real name: Robert Kelly) also watched, occasionally rocking in his chair and resting his chin in his hand, reported the Associated Press.
During the video, the girl calls the man “daddy” during and in-between sex, and although he walks to the camera to adjust it a few times, his face is obscured. The man is also seen giving the girl money at the beginning.
Prosecutors claim the man is R. Kelly, and that the female could be as young as 13 when the tape was made — between Jan. 1, 1998, and Nov. 1, 2000. The defense, however, argues that the singer is not the man on the tape, and that the girl at the center of the trial is not her at all.
That claim is also made by the 23-year-old woman prosecutors say was a minor at the time of the taping. She denies she’s the girl on the video as well.
Cook County prosecutor Shauna Boliker said, during her opening statement, that the female in question was taken advantage of due to the inherent trust children place in adults, and that she performed acts that Kelly “commanded” her to perform.
The videotape, she said, is “child pornography that was created, staged, produced and starred in by the defendant that sits before you, Robert Kelly.”
She also revealed that the prosecution would not call the alleged victim to the stand, and did not explain why. The defense was quick to exploit that point though, during their opening statement, asking jurors why prosecutors wouldn’t call her as a witness.
“One answer,” he said. “One: It’s not her on that tape.”
Defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. also brought issue to the origin of the sex tape, pointing out that no one knows where it came from, and that no one can identify the man as Kelly in the tape.
“Not a single witness can tell you that is him on the tape,” Adam said. He also said the FBI could not identify the man on the tape as Kelly either, reports the AP.
To further prove his argument, Adam explained that Kelly has a “significant” mole in the middle of his lower back that’s been there since childhood, which he displayed in a photo.
He said jurors wouldn’t find the mole on the back of the man in the videotape. “There is no mole on his back,” Adam said. “Robert isn’t that man on the tape.”
Adam said that the female in the video “is not a victim because she is not the girl on that tape.” Instead, he suggested the woman in the video is a “professional prostitute” because the man in the video is seen handing her money.
Kelly has pleaded not guilty to the charges, and if convicted, faces up to 15 years in prison.