R Kelly says sexual misconduct allegations are being used to “destroy my legacy”

Singer claims media has "manipulated these false allegations" in an "attempt to distort my character"

R Kelly has released a new statement in response to the backlash he’s faced following recent sexual misconduct allegations levelled at him.

In March, R&B performer Kelly was accused of grooming a 14 year-old girl to be his sex “pet”. Then, in April, Dallas police confirmed they were investigating claims that Kelly gave a woman a STD and plied her with drugs and alcohol when she was 19. He has denied all allegations of sexual misconduct.

In a new statement, shared by The Associated Press, Kelly says he is “heartbroken” by the allegations, describing himself as “a God-fearing man, a son, a brother, and most importantly a father”.

Kelly goes on to claim that the media has “perpetuated… dissected and manipulated these false allegations” in an “attempt to distort my character and to destroy my legacy that I have worked so hard to build”.

A separate statement, issued by Kelly’s management earlier this week, described the star as “the target of a greedy, conscious and malicious conspiracy to demean him, his family and the women with whom he spends his time”.

“Since America was born, black men and women have been lynched for having sex or for being accused of it,” the statement argued. “We will vigorously resist this attempted public lynching of a black man who has made extraordinary contributions to our culture”.

R Kelly

Kelly has had concerts cancelled following the #MuteRKelly social campaign, which has called on companies working with Kelly to sever ties with the star.

  • For help, advice or more information regarding sexual harassment, assault and rape in the UK, visit the Rape Crisis charity website. In the US, visit RAINN.