R. Kelly Charged With Bribing Official to Marry Aaliyah R. Kelly is facing a new allegation involving his 1994 marriage to Aaliyah.
According to federal docs, obtained by TMZ, prosecutors say that Kelly and others bribed an Illinois government employee in order to obtain a “fraudulent identification document” for Aaliyah.
The fake ID was used to obtain a marriage license that listed her age as 18, one of Kelly’s former tour managers, Demetrius Smith, revealed in Lifetime’s “Surviving R. Kelly” documentary. According to Smith, Aaliyah was only 15 at the time.
Prosecutors claim that the fake ID purchase constitutes bribery. The allegation has been added to the existing racketeering charge filed against Kelly in New York that accuses him of sexually exploiting underage girls.
Kelly’s attorney, Doug Anton, has slammed the new allegation. “The charge is ridiculous and it smacks of the same desperation as the entire case,” he tells TMZ.
In an interview with “Good Morning America” earlier this year, another one of Kelly’s lawyers, Steven Greenberg, said Kelly had “no idea” Aaliyah was 15 when they married. “My understanding is that she did not claim to be 15, and in order to get married, she had to lie about her age,” said Greenberg.
Just this week, a Cook County, Ill. judge set a Sept. 14 trial date for Kelly, who is charged in four sexual abuse cases in the area. The 52-year-old singer, who remains in federal custody, is scheduled to go on trial in Chicago in April, and the following month in New York for other sexual abuse charges.