Three R. Kelly Associates Charged for Trying To Bribe, Intimidate His Accusers

Three men prosecutors say are connected with R. Kelly were charged in federal court for using threats, intimidation, and bribes to try and influence the testimony by the abuse victims in the case against the singer.

The three men identified as Richard Arline Jr., Donnell Russell, and Michael Williams. Acting United States Attorney Seth DuCharme said in press release "The defendants are separately charged with engaging in multiple crimes that were intended to undermine and subvert the integrity of the criminal justice system and victimize the women who have come forward with serious allegations of criminal conduct against the defendant R. Kelly,"

DuCharme also said "Efforts to illegally influence pending federal cases, whether through threats of violence, intimidation, damage to property, or payments to buy a potential witness's silence, will not be tolerated,"

R. Kelly's attorney said his client "had nothing to do with any of these alleged acts by those charged."

According to BuzzFeed

Three people have been arrested and charged with attempting to harass, threaten, or bribe R. Kelly's alleged abuse victims, federal prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Richard Arline Jr., Donnell Russell, and Michael Williams separately tried to intimidate or influence the testimony of women named as victims in the federal racketeering case in New York against the musician, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, according to the US Attorney's Office in Brooklyn.

According to another complaint, Russell had threatened to release sexually explicit photos of another alleged victim if she did not withdraw her civil lawsuit seeking damages from Kelly. Prosecutors also said Russell, who described himself as Kelly's manager, threatened the alleged victim's mother via text messages. He is expected to appear before a judge in the Eastern District of New York at a later date.

The singer is currently being held in federal custody in Chicago while awaiting a federal trial for child pornography and sexual exploitation of children. He has also been charged with two counts of prostitution with a minor in Minnesota.

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