R. Kelly judge to decide on order protecting evidence

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CHICAGO (AP) – A federal judge overseeing singer R. Kelly’s child-pornography case in Chicago is set to rule on how tightly he should restrict access to and mentions of the evidence.

There’s little doubt Judge Harry Leinenweber will approve some form of a protective order during a Wednesday hearing. But the singer’s lawyers said at a hearing last week that restrictions proposed by prosecutors were too wide-reaching and could hamper their defense.

Kelly is jailed on charges that also include coercing minors to engage in sex. Marshals are transporting him to New York for his Friday arraignment on related charges. He isn’t expected to attend Wednesday’s Chicago hearing.

His 82-year-old judge revealed last week that before his assignment to the case this month he hadn’t heard of Kelly, whose hits include “Bump N’ Grind” and “I Believe I Can Fly.”

FILE – In this June 26, 2019, file photo, R&B singer R. Kelly, center, arrives at the Leighton Criminal Court building for an arraignment on sex-related felonies in Chicago. Kelly, who was arrested in Chicago on July 11, 2019 on a federal grand jury indictment listing 13 counts including sex crimes and obstruction of justice, was ordered held without bond on Tuesday, July 16. (AP Photo/Amr Alfiky, File)
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