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R. Kelly Tells BET: 'I Don't Like Anyone Illegal'

In his first public interview since being acquitted of child pornography charges, R. Kelly told BET News that he wasn't interested in "anyone illegal."

Kelly was there to talk about the album he's working on, but the question had to come up and when asked if he liked teenage girls, Kelly wanted some clarification first: "When you say teenage, how old are we talkin', 19?"

"I have some 19-year-old friends. But I don't like anybody illegal, if that's what we're talking about, underage."

Kelly said he was worried that he could be convicted but was "very prayerful" and "wouldn't wish it on a worst enemy." The 26-minute tape that was at the center of the trial featured oral sex, masturbation and other acts. If found guilty, he could have faced a 15-year prison term.

"When you're me, when you're R. Kelly, everybody wants a piece of you, and if you don't give 'em a piece they'll find a way to get a piece of you one way or the other," he said of how he thought the accusations came about. "I've been blackmailed a billion times in my career. At one point in my life, I was an ATM machine. People would come up and push whatever, and if it don't come out they'll go tell somebody this or that. I'm used to that."

"It's time for me to move on," he said. "I can't keep answering these questions. If you was charged with something and you were found innocent, then you can't be found guilty for being found innocent."

His new album, '12 Play 4th Quarter', is scheduled for the fall and Kelly says he's changing it up a little: "I'm really trying to make this album a little bit different. Take a little bit of the edge off, you know? And you know, clean up a few lyrics if I can, you know?"

September 18, 2008 |

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