R. Kelly loses civil court case after missing hearing

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Reuters

Image caption

R. Kelly outside court after a hearing in his criminal case on 22 March

Singer R. Kelly has lost a civil court case by default after failing to respond to a legal case brought by a woman who accused him of sexual abuse.

He failed to turn up at a court in Chicago, leading a judge to pass the ruling against him.

The woman, identified only as HW, accused Kelly of repeatedly having sex with her when she was a minor.

She is also one of four accusers in a separate criminal case. He has pleaded not guilty and denied any wrongdoing.

In her civil lawsuit, HW claimed the R&B singer initiated a sexual relationship with her 20 years ago when she was 16. The age of consent in Illinois is 17.

The judge will determine how much Kelly should pay in damages next month.

The victim sued the singer in February, a day before Kelly was arrested on 10 charges of sexual abuse.

Lawyer Steve Greenberg, who is representing Kelly in the criminal case, said he was not involved in the civil litigation and declined to comment.

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