R. Kelly is facing new allegations that he arranged a coast-to-coast flight for Azriel Clary when she was 17, and now the girl’s parents fear that she may have been lured into a sex cult.
As TMZ reported, federal investigators are now looking the claim that the R&B singer arranged for the travel for the underaged girl. If it could be proven that he flew her for the purpose of sex, it would constitute a federal crime since he transported her across state lines to do it, the report noted.
The incident reportedly took place back in 2015, when Clary flew from Palm Springs to Phoenix and then to Orlando.
The new investigation comes after a docu-series shed light on the many allegations of sexual misconduct against the singer, including allegations that he sexually abused underage women. The series, Surviving R. Kelly, has led to a new interest in the decades of allegations against the the singer and a new backlash. It led many radio stations and streaming music services to pull his catalog of music, and Kelly also lost his record contract with Sony Music.
R. Kelly had already gone on trial for allegations that he filmed a sex tape with an underage girl, and he was acquitted of the charges. Kelly has since faced new allegations, including that he held women captive in what was described as a sex cult.
Despite the backlash, R. Kelly’s adviser, Don Russell, said that there are still new opportunities waiting for the singer even after being dropped.
“We understand RCA’s position: they have to remain transparent for the sake of the other artists that they represent and generate wealth for,” Russell told Variety. “They’re not in the position of dealing with the kind of stuff that has come about with R. Kelly. He has no issue with RCA. I think he’s outgrown RCA. He’s ready for the next level of life, anyway.”
The new allegations against R. Kelly could pose some very serious consequences, but the TMZ report noted that he could have a defense ready. The report noted that R. Kelly had a signed letter from the girl’s parents giving her authorization to stay with a woman named Valerie Denise Payton, though the letter was dated five months after the girl was alleged to have stayed with R. Kelly.
R. Kelly could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted for flying Azriel Clary across state lines for the purpose of sex.