R. Kelly’s court hearing on Friday morning produced little of substance, as the singer’s attorney Steve Greenberg asked the judge to delay a ruling on his request to travel to Dubai to perform several still-unconfirmed concerts next month. After the hearing, another Kelly attorney, Doug Anton, said the singer’s team is preparing contracts for the event to provide the judge with a more detailed proposed itinerary, according to the Chicago Sun Times. Greenberg confirmed the report to Variety.
Also in the hearing, Greenberg formally asked for a copy of the sex tapes allegedly featuring Kelly that attorneys Michael Avenatti and Gloria Allred claim have surfaced in recent weeks, although the judge did not rule on that, according to TMZ. Greenberg has said he can’t plan a defense strategy without seeing the tapes.
The next hearing is scheduled for May 7, the judge said on a livestream of today’s hearing.
Kelly is facing 10 counts of criminal sexual abuse against four young women, three of whom were underage at the time; he has pleaded not guilty to all charges. Due to those charges, Kelly cannot legally leave the country, as a judge in his sexual abuse case ordered the singer to surrender his passport. The concerts are scheduled between April 17 and April 19. Greenberg, who has said recently that Kelly is having financial troubles, has argued that the singer’s work requires him to travel. The singer was also arrested for non-payment of more than $160,000 in child support last month; for both arrests, he was bailed out by unnamed fans after spending three days in jail.
“Surviving R. Kelly,” a harrowing docuseries that aired on Lifetime earlier this year, renewed interest in the allegations against Kelly. Following the release of the series, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx urged others with stories about the musician to come forward. In a statement released to Variety on Friday, a rep for the Lifetime network said, “We are proud that Lifetime was able to provide a platform for survivors to be heard.”