R. Kelly, one of the top-selling recording artists of all time, has been dogged for years by allegations of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls – accusations he and his attorneys have long denied.

But an Illinois prosecutor’s plea for potential victims and witnesses to come forward and new protests have sparked hope among some advocates that the R&B star might face criminal charges.

“Please come forward. There’s nothing that can be done to investigate these allegations without cooperation between victims and witnesses,” Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx said Tuesday at a news conference in Chicago.

In recent days, Kelly has faced pressure from advocates who have protested outside of his Chicago studio and demanded that police investigate allegations against minors.

The latest attention comes days after Lifetime aired the documentary “Surviving R. Kelly,” which revisited old allegations and brought new ones into the spotlight. The series follows the BBC’s “R Kelly: Sex, Girls & Videotapes,” which was released last year. It alleged that the singer was holding women against their will and running a “sex cult.”

Despite the accusations that span decades, the star singer, songwriter and producer who rose from poverty on Chicago’s South Side has retained a sizable following.


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