Dubai Denies R Kelly Is Booked To Perform
The government of Dubai issued a rare statement on Sunday denying a claim that R Kelly is scheduled to perform concerts in the sheikhdom.
Lawyers for the R&B singer, who was charged in February with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse, filed a motion with the Cook County Circuit Court last week seeking permission for him to leave the U.S. for a series of shows in the United Arab Emirates in April.
“While there he is supposed to meet with the royal family,” the filing stated.
But, according to a statement from the Dubai Media Office, “authorities in Dubai have not received any request for a performance by singer R. Kelly nor are there any venues that have been booked.” It also said the singer “has not been invited by the Dubai royal family for a performance.”
Kelly’s lawyer Steven A. Greenberg told the Associated Press in an email: “Mr. Kelly had a signed contract with a legitimate promoter, and any information that was included in the motion to travel was from that contract. We did not say he was invited by the royal family, but the contract did provide that he would make himself available to meet with them.”
At a hearing in Chicago on Friday, Kelly’s lawyers asked the judge to delay a ruling while it prepares a more detailed itinerary.
Greenberg told Rolling Stone in a statement that Kelly’s contract with “a legitimate promoter” was filed with the court. As for why no concerts have been announced in Dubai, the lawyer explained: “Since he does not, as of yet, have permission to travel it is understandable why no one have invested in the promotion, booked venues or publicized any shows.”
Lawyer Michael Avenatti, who reportedly provided prosecutors with a videotape that allegedly shows Kelly having sex with an underage female, tweeted on Sunday that he believes the singer “fabricated the concerts in Dubai and the meeting with the Royal family in an attempt to flee the country.”
There is no extradition treaty between the U.S. and the UAE.