Music

R. Kelly in jail after failing to pay $220,000 in child support

R&B superstar R. Kelly was taken into custody on Wednesday for failing to pay child support, just weeks after he was detained on sex abuse charges.

The US singer was unable to come up with the US$161,000 (S$220,000) he owes in payments to his former wife and their three children, and a judge in Chicago, where Kelly lives, ordered him to be arrested.

It was the latest legal setback for the 52-year-old who pleaded not guilty on Feb 25 to 10 counts of aggravated criminal sex abuse against four victims, three of them minors.

Kelly's representatives say he is having financial difficulties and has been the target of a boycott campaign. He was prepared on Wednesday to pay US$50,000 to US$60,000 of what he owed, according to his publicist Darryll Johnson, but the judge required the full amount.

Kelly, who arrived in court in a blue business suit, was "expecting to leave".

Instead, he was taken into custody and escorted from the courtroom by a police officer. He will likely remain in jail until his next court hearing on March 13.

"The reason he can't pay, as you know, he hadn't worked in a long time. He can't book shows, he can't do anything," Mr Johnson said. - AFP

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