R. Kelly jetted into the New York City area Thursday, a day ahead of his scheduled federal court appearance in Brooklyn on sex trafficking charges.
Chopper 4 exclusively captured footage of Kelly's arrival at New Jersey's Teterboro Airport Thursday afternoon (watch above). The singer was charged in separate federal indictments in Chicago and New York earlier this month with a slate of sex crimes involving minors, including pornography and coercion.
Wearing a tan prison shirt and orange shoes, the R&B star had his hands cuffed in front of him and shuffled along the tarmac as an officer escorted him by the arm to a waiting pickup truck. Multiple law enforcement officers, some of them wearing bulletproof vests, helped Kelly into the back left passenger seat of the truck. The truck pulled away a short time later, escorted by a police SUV and followed by a black sedan and a second police SUV.
Chopper 4 followed the caravan, sirens blaring, as it got onto the highway en route to Kelly's next holding facility, the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.
Kelly has been held without bail in Illinois since his arrest. At his Chicago arraignment, Kelly, wearing an orange jumpsuit and shackled at the ankles, did not speak except to say “yes sir” when the judge asked if he understood the charges. His attorney, Steve Greenberg, submitted a not guilty plea.
Greenberg also filed a new motion Thursday asking a judge to reconsider the decision to keep Kelly behind bars. The attorney suggested court personnel could monitor Kelly's activities if he's placed on home confinement; he also said limiting the singer's internet access would make it "virtually impossible to contact any witnesses without being caught."
Prosecutors had expressed concerns that Kelly might try to do just that should be be freed as he awaits trial.