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As the king of R&B, R. Kelly, is poised to release a album on May 29 in addition to enjoying the fruits of a hit single in the form of "I'm A Flirt," there are others wondering why the legal system is taking so long to try the singer-songwriter for the child pornography charges that stemmed back in 2002.

In an article released earlier this week by the Associated Press, "A series of sometimes bizarre events, including a judge's tumble from a ladder and a case of appendicitis, have delayed the 40-year-old R&B superstar's trial far longer than the norm. Kelly is due in a Chicago courtroom Friday for yet another status hearing, but there's still no trial date in sight."

Other celebrity trials, including Michael Jackson's, have long since begun and ended since Kelly's indictment. And judging by how long it usually takes such cases to run their course, Kelly's trial should have finished years ago, legal observers say.

According to the AP article, "Kelly's lawyer's may figure that the delays have worked in their client's favor, and not only because they've given him the chance to keep working and making millions."

But it's also given any prospective jury a chance to conclude that the case and the timeframe that the alleged incident took place (some time in the 1990s) may be too far back in the past.

Since being charged, Kelly has released six albums -- most of them million-sellers, and he's finishing 10 more chapters of his running R&B operetta, "Trapped in the Closet."

Kelly's also written a new song, "Rise Up," about healing in the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shootings; 100 percent of the net proceeds from the song's sale are going to a victims' memorial fund.


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