Attorney Michael Avenatti says he expects feds to charge R. Kelly

CHICAGO Ill. – The Latest on the sexual abuse case against R&B singer R. Kelly (all times local):

4:45 p.m.

Attorney Michael Avenatti says he expects R&B singer R. Kelly to face “serious federal charges” in the coming weeks.

Chicago prosecutors on Thursday charged Kelly with 11 new sex-related counts accusing him of coercing a minor into sex through threats or actual violence. Kelly was arrested in February and charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse pertaining to four women, including three who were underage when the alleged abuse occurred. The new charges pertain to one of those three women.

Avenatti told The Associated Press that he represents three Kelly victims, two parents and two whistleblowers, and that he has provided “significant evidence” against Kelly to federal prosecutors in multiple U.S. attorneys’ offices. He declined to say which districts would pursue the charges, but he said he and his clients have been cooperating with prosecutors “for the better part of four months.”

Avenatti faces his own serious federal charges, including ones accusing him of trying to shake down Nike and cheating his most famous client, porn star Stormy Daniels, out of $300,000.

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2:50 p.m.

Prosecutors in Chicago have charged R&B singer R. Kelly with 11 new sex-related counts, including some that carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Cook County prosecutors filed the new charges against Kelly on hursday. Among the new charges are four counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, two counts of criminal sexual assault by force, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and three counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse against a victim between the ages of 13 to 16. The charges apparently pertain to a single victim.

The four aggravated criminal sexual assault counts carry maximum terms of 30 years in prison.

Kelly was already facing 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four women years ago, three of whom were minors when the alleged abuse occurred.

Kelly’s defense attorney, Steve Greenberg, didn’t immediately respond to an email from the AP seeking comment. He told the Sun-Times that he had received word of new charges from prosecutors but hadn’t seen any filings in the case. He did say he understood that the allegations are “from years ago.”

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