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R Kelly denies holding several women in 'abusive cult'

18/07/2017 00:00:00
by BBC
 
R&B singer R Kelly
 
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R&B singer R Kelly has denied allegations that he is holding several young women in an "abusive cult".

The singer's lawyer said he would work "diligently and forcibly to pursue his accusers and clear his name".

A BuzzFeed report accuses the singer of brainwashing women, who got closer to him in an effort to boost their musical careers.

Kelly has faced previous accusations of sexual misconduct, but was never found guilty. He denies any wrongdoing.

The report, which quoted three unnamed sets of parents, said they had not seen or spoken with their daughters for months, and that the women, all of them over the age of consent, had their routines controlled by the singer.

That included rules about what they could eat and wear, when to bath and sleep and how to engage in sexual encounters recorded by him, they said.

Kelly 'alarmed' by claims

Three former members of Kelly's inner circle were also interviewed, saying that six women lived in properties managed by the singer in similar conditions.

If they broke the "rules", they said, the women could be punished physically and verbally by the singer, according to to report.

Some of the parents reported their concerns to the police, but the women said they were not being held against their will.

The singer's lawyer, Linda Mensch, said in a statement: "Robert Kelly is both alarmed and disturbed at the recent revelations attributed to him. Mr Kelly unequivocally denies such allegations."

BuzzFeed has said it is standing by its reporting.

In 2008, R Kelly was acquitted of 14 charges of making child pornography after a videotape emerged allegedly showing him having sex with a 14-year-old girl.

Kelly is one of the most successful R&B artists of all time, with 40 million records sold worldwide. His best known his include I Believe I Can Fly and Ignition (Remix).



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