Singer R. Kelly’s manager, Donnell Russell, was recently charged for allegedly making a threatening phone call in December 2018 to a Manhattan theater, halting the screening of “Surviving R. Kelly,” which is about allegations against Kelly about the sexual abuse of minor girls and women.
Russell is charged in two counts with threatening physical harm by interstate communication, and conspiracy to do the same, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of New York.
“Threats of gun violence aimed at intimidating and silencing victims of sexual abuse are unlawful as well as unacceptable,” acting U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss stated. “We are committed to aggressively investigating and prosecuting such crimes.” Each charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
R. Kelly is jailed and charged with sex crimes in Illinois and New York.
Additionally, as CNN recently reported, three other men thought to be R. Kelly associates are charged in separate schemes to to harass, bribe and threaten witnesses in the federal racketeering case against Kelly, authorities allege. The U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn identify the trio as Richard Arline Jr., Donnell Russell and Michael Williams.
“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,” Acting United States Attorney Seth DuCharme stated.
To CNN, Steve Greenberg, an attorney for R. Kelly, denies his client’s knowledge or involvement in the allegations. “He hasn't attempted to intimidate anyone or encouraged anyone else to do so. No involvement whatsoever.”
Sources: CNN, Greenville News, HipHopWired, Instagram, The Grio, The Hollywood Reporter, TMZ, Twitter, unWinewithTashaK, Upnewsinfo.com, Washington Post