R. Kelly silenced Aaliyah's family with legal agreement to marry her when she was 15 years old, new doc reveals
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Featured Image Credit: Lifetime / REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo
R. Kelly has been accused of silencing Aaliyah and her family with a legal agreement after marrying her when she was just 15 years old in a new documentary.
Two episodes were added to Lifetime's shocking Surviving R. Kelly docu-series, which aired on January 2 and 3.
Although Kelly was sentenced to 30 years in prison following his September 2021 sex trafficking trial and was convicted on child pornography charges in a second federal trial last year, the doc argues that everyone in the self-proclaimed king of R&B's operation who turned a blind eye to his crime 'needs to go to jail'.
One of the focuses of the previous episodes was the relationship between the 55-year-old and the late singer Aaliyah, with the pair having illegally married using falsified documents in 1994 when she was just 15 and he was 27.
The marriage was annulled a year later and the singer, full name Aaliyah Dana Haughton, stopped working with Kelly soon after.
A woman named Angela, who alleged she and other performers on tour with the rapper were frequently pressured to have sex with him as a way of ‘paying their dues’, is the first person to have testified that they directly witnessed sexual activity between Kelly and Aaliyah in the 2021 criminal trial in New York.
Several other witnesses said that they were aware of the relationship between the pair, including a former tour manager who claimed Kelly told him that he was ‘seducing her’.
Demetrius Smith also claimed that Kelly instigated the marriage because he feared Aaliyah was pregnant and wanted to avoid being prosecuted for statutory rape.
The latest instalment of Surviving R. Kelly, which centres around the rapper's 2022 federal trial, highlights a moment in which a non-disclosure agreement was given as evidence.
According to Variety, people close to the two suggested the marriage was a way for Kelly to avoid being convicted of statutory rape of a minor.
Another former member of Kelly's security team, Gem Pratt, was appears in the new episodes of the docu-series where he alleges that Aaliyah's dad was angry about the marriage and forced the annulment.
Pratt went on to claim that her family had entered a contractual agreement with the rapper to not press charges with him after it was nullified.
He suggested Kelly gave her relatives an incentive to enter the agreement by selling them the rights to his first three albums.
Although these allegations are yet to be confirmed, Kelly was finally charged for a number of crimes in September 2021 after decades of rumours and allegations about sexual misconduct with minors.
Following his recent trial in Chicago, he was convicted on six of 13 counts, and he faces further charges in Minnesota.
He's due to be sentenced for the 2022 charges in February this year.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact The Survivor’s Trust for free on 08088 010 818, or through their website thesurvivorstrust.org