"I’ve done a lot of wrong things in my life, but I’m not a criminal, I’m not a monster."
——R. Kelly insists he's innocent


R&B Superstar Arrested for Violating Child Pornography Laws
R. Kelly was indicted by a Cook County grand jury today, which accused the soul star of violating child pornography laws. The 33-year-old Chicago native was reportedly taken into custody in Florida by police.

Prosecutors had possession of a video which appeared to show the performer committing sex acts with a 14-year-old girl. The Chicago Sun-Times reported in February it had received the tape anonymously and handed it over to local authorities.

State law prohibits soliciting a minor to participate in sex acts on tape or film or disseminating child pornography.

The Class 1 felony charge carries a prison term of up to 15 years and a fine of up to $100k.

Cook County State Attorney Richard Devine empaneled a grand jury to hear more than a dozen witnesses identify Kelly and the teen on the tape, confirming the two had a sexual relationship.

The tape has been authenticated by the FBI. Bootleg copies of the video have been available for sale on street corners around the country and on the Internet—$10 for VHS, $15 DVD and $20 for a live performance.

Recently, Kelly has paid settlements to three young women who filed suit, claiming he coerced them into sexual relationships. A fourth lawsuit was filed by a 33-year-old dancer who charges she was unknowingly videotaped by Kelly during a sexual liaison. That case is still pending.

The scandal has hurt Kelly’s career, with minsters and community activists in Chicago, Philadelphia, New York, Atlanta and Los Angles urging boycotts of stores that sell his albums and radio stations which play his music. Kelly’s recent album with rapper Jay-Z, The Best of Both Worlds, released after the scandal, was a commercial disappointment. The Sun-Times reported the rapper has refused to tour, make videos or even be photographed with Kelly since the investigation surfaced. And now Dr. Dre has decided not to release a track he produced with Kelly, who is married to a former dancer from his touring group, with a newborn son and two young daughters.

In recent TV interview, Kelly said he hasn’t seen the video in question, insisting, "I’ve done a lot of wrong things in my life, but I’m not a criminal, I’m not a monster."