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R Kelly’s ex goddaughter tells jury that the singer had sex with her from age 15-18



A woman who has been pivotal to R. Kelly’s legal troubles for more than two decades testified on Thursday, August 18 that the R&B singer had sex with her ‘hundreds’ of times before she turned 18 years old, starting when she was just 15.

Jane – the pseudonym for the now 37-year-old woman at Kelly’s trial on child pornography and obstruction of justice charges told jurors that in the late 1990s when she was 13, she asked the Grammy award-winning singer to be her godfather because she saw him as a mentor.

She said few weeks after, Kelly started calling her to say sexual things.

She said he first touched her breasts when she was around 14 at a Chicago recording studio, and that around that time, he ‘started penetration’ at his North Side Chicago home.

Jane said she was 15 when they first had intercourse. Kelly, 55, would have been around 30 years old at the time.

Sometimes, they would have sex with other teenage girls she would recruit at Kelly’s request, she testified,

With her testimony on Thursday, Jane served as the first former victim to speak out about what she allegedly endured in the R&B star’s ongoing child pornography trial.

He stands charged in Chicago federal court with enticing of minors for sex, producing child pornography and rigging his 2008 pornography trial.

Prosecutors allege that R. Kelly paid off and threatened Jane and her family to ensure that she didn’t testify at a similar 2008 trial. She didn’t testify and he was ultimately acquitted.

Kelly, 55, is serving a 30-year prison sentence for his conviction in a New York court earlier this year on other federal charges alleging he used his fame to sexually abuse fans over several decades.

Two other minor victims are also expected to testify in the Chicago trial, which is expected to last about a month.

Jane said she was in a music group at the time, and Kelly — a friend of her aunt’s — attended one of their performances, and gave her good feedback.

‘It made me feel happy that such a successful person was saying I was gifted, so I was excited,’ Jane testified, according to the Chicago Tribune.

She said her aunt then advised her to ask Kelly to be her godfather. According to her, her aunt said ‘I should sit on his lap and rub his head and ask him to play that role in my life.’

Jane said she obliged, and Kelly ‘chuckled a bit, and said “yes.”

But soon the relationship became sexual.

In at least one case, WGN-TV reports, she said Kelly asked her what color her underwear was, and told her he was pleasuring himself as they spoke.

Kelly then gave her alcohol for the first time when she was 14, Jane said, and she began drinking heavily.

‘It would help me loosen up, kind of take me away from the moment,’ she said.

By the time she was 15, she said, they started having sex, and when asked by a prosecutor how she knew her exact age, Jane replied: ‘Because that’s when I lost my virginity.’

From there, Jane said, they would have intercourse in Kelly’s home on West George Street, at his Near West Side recording studio, on tour buses and in hotels.

Asked by a prosecutor how she would know what to do sexually, Jane answered: ‘He would tell me what to do.’

And when asked how many times they had sex before she turned 18, she answered quietly: ‘Uncountable times…hundreds.’

Unlike at the 2008 trial, Jane is now cooperating with prosecutors and is a pivotal witness.

Prosecutors say Kelly shot an explicit video of Jane in a log cabin-themed room at his North Side Chicago home between 1998 and 2000. In it, the girl is heard calling the man ‘daddy.’

Prosecutors say Kelly, who rose from poverty on Chicago’s South Side to become a star singer, knew a conviction in 2008 would effectively end his life, so he conspired to fix that trial.

According to prosecutors, Kelly told Jane and her parents to leave Chicago, paying for them to travel to the Bahamas and Cancun, Mexico.

When they returned, prosecutors say Kelly sought to isolate Jane, moving her around to different hotels. When called before a state grand jury looking into the video, Jane, her father and mother denied it was her in it.

On June 13, 2008, when he was acquitted on all counts of child pornography, some of the jurors told reporters after the trial that they weren’t convinced that the female in the video was who state prosecutors said she was.

Kelly, who has denied any wrongdoing, has been trailed for decades by complaints and allegations about his sexual behavior. The scrutiny intensified after the #MeToo era and the 2019 six-part documentary ‘Surviving R. Kelly.’

Kelly also faces four counts of enticement of minors for sex – one each for four other accusers. They, too, are expected to testify.

Prosecutors also say they have evidence of at least three videos showing Kelly having sex with underage girls.


Indonesia Passes New Law To Criminalize Sex Outside Of Marriage




GETTY There were protests against the new code on Monday

Indonesian lawmakers passed a sweeping new criminal code on Tuesday that criminalizes sex outside marriage, as part of a tranche of changes that critics say threaten human rights and freedoms in the Southeast Asian country.

The new code, which also applies to foreign residents and tourists, bans cohabitation before marriage, apostasy, and provides punishments for insulting the president or expressing views counter to the national ideology.

“All have agreed to ratify the (draft changes) into law,” said lawmaker Bambang Wuryanto, who led the parliamentary commission in charge of revising the colonial-era code. “The old code belongs to Dutch heritage … and is no longer relevant.”

The world’s largest Muslim-majority nation, Indonesia has seen a rise in religious conservatism in recent years. Strict Islamic laws are already enforced in parts of the country, including the semi-autonomous Aceh province, where alcohol and gambling are banned. Public floggings also take place in the region for a range of offences including homosexuality and adultery.

A previous draft of the code was set to be passed in 2019 but was postponed after nationwide protests prompted Indonesian President Joko Widodo to intervene. In a televised address at the time, Widodo said he decided to delay the vote after “seriously considering feedback from different parties who feel objections on some substantial content of the criminal code.”

In the lead-up to Tuesday’s vote, rights groups and critics warned that the new code would “disproportionately impact women” and further curtail human rights and freedoms in the country of more than 270 million people.

Human Rights Watch Indonesia Researcher Andreas Harsono said the laws are “a setback for already declining religious freedom in Indonesia,” warning that “non-believers could be prosecuted and jailed.”

“The danger of oppressive laws is not that they’ll be broadly applied, it’s that they provide an avenue for selective enforcement,” he said.

Under the laws, sex outside marriage carries a potential one-year prison term, and the crime of blasphemy, already on Indonesia’s books, could now lead to a five-year prison sentence.

Rahmat Purnama, from the University of Indonesia’s law faculty, said the laws would be implemented after a transitional period of three years.

Source: CNN

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Elon Musk Hopes to Test a Brain Implant in Humans Next Year




In this still image from the Neuralink presentation video on YouTube, a presenter, lower left, described how a monkey used a wireless transmitter to “type” characters on a keyboard.Credit...Neuralink

Neuralink, the startup Elon Musk founded to link our brains directly to computers, showed progress Wednesday in two medical areas: helping blind people to see and helping people with spinal cord injuries to walk or use their hands.

The company, one of five that Musk leads, is working on technology to drop thousands of electrodes thinner than a hair into the outer surface of human brains. Each electrode is a tiny wire connected to a battery-powered, remotely recharged, quarter-sized chip package that’s embedded into a spot that once held a circle of skull. The chip, called the N1, communicates wirelessly with the outside world.

The technology is still far from the initial medical uses, much less Musk’s ultimate vision of using Neuralink to hang out with superintelligent AIs. But the company is making significant progress, including applying with the Food and Drug Administration to begin human trials it hopes to start within six months, the company said at a “show and tell” event lasting more than two hours.

“Our goal will be to turn the lights on for someone who’s spent decades living in the dark,” said Neuralink researcher Dan Adams, who’s working on the effort to repackage camera data into a brain-compatible format and pipe it directly to the visual cortex.

Musk has some cred when it comes to revolutionary tech. His electric-vehicle company Tesla is profoundly changing cars and his SpaceX outfit is transforming space access with reusable rockets. His reputation as a tech genius has taken a beating, though, with the chaos at Twitter after his $44 billion acquisition. Musk’s Boring Company, which aims to revamp auto transportation with tunnels, also hasn’t lived up to its promises yet.

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US President Joe Biden turns 80 Today: New Generation’ of Democratic Leaders Takes Control in Congress




President Joe Biden will celebrate his 80th birthday on Sunday, marking the first time a sitting president has reached that milestone while in office and fueling speculation about how his advancing age will affect his political future.

Biden — who was the oldest person to assume the presidency in January 2021, just 61 days after his 78th birthday — has said he intends to make another White House bid, even as his age-adjacent peers, including 82-year-old House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have made the decision to step away from leadership in order to make way for a younger generation.

“My intention is that I will run again. But I’m a great respecter of fate and this is ultimately a family decision. I think everybody wants me to run but we’re going to have discussions about it. And I don’t feel any hurry one way or the other to make that judgment.” he said last week, after helming what many say is the most successful midterm election for a sitting president’s party in decades, though noting that those results would not have an impact on his decision to run again.

PHOTO: President Joe Biden greets guests before speaking at an event at the White House complex, Nov. 18, 2022, in Washington, D.C.

Biden is the oldest person to serve as commander in chief in the nation’s history. Should he seek reelection in 2024 and win, the president would be 86 by the end of his second term. He has said he’ll talk over his future with his wife and the rest of his family over the holidays.

Biden has said he is hoping that he and his wife “get a little time to actually sneak away for a week around between Christmas and Thanksgiving” and that his decision to run for reelection will likely “be early next year we make that judgment.”

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