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R Kelly’s lawyers want gag orders maintained in trial

But the media wants access to court records

R Kelly’s lawyers are attempting to maintain gag orders and continue to operate in closed hearings for the R&B singer’s trial which is scheduled to begin this Friday (May 9).

Gag orders were placed on attorneys and pretrial hearings have thus far been closed in the case, which will see Kelly stand trial for sex with a minor.

The Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, WBEZ-Chicago Public Radio and The Associated Press all filed emergency motions on Friday (May 2), seeking court transcripts and an end to the gag orders.

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But Kelly’s attorney Marc Martin says that a fair trial may be hindered by media attention saying “The First Amendment right to access in the context of a criminal trial is not absolute.”

State Supreme Court Judge Vincent Gaughan has said he is attempting to protect the rights of Kelly, and is conscious that information through the media may affect prospective jurors, says the Associated Press.

A hearing on the matter is set for May 8.

–By our New York staff.

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