Federal prosecutors want to seize R. Kelly royalties from Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment

Photo credit: Tingey Injury Law Firm

New court filings show federal prosecutors have sought to garnish royalties related to R. Kelly from Universal Music Publishing Group and Sony Music Entertainment.

Federal prosecutors have officially requested that the royalties held by R. Kelly be seized SonyMusicEntertainment And Universal Music Publishing Groupit is used to pay victims and settle outstanding fines.

Prosecutors in Brooklyn have asked a federal judge for garnishment orders against the label and publisher — court orders that would force the two companies to hand over funds related to Kelly’s music — two years after they won a jury verdict that found the disgraced singer over Sex trafficking was convicted of extortion.

federal prosecutors argue that Sony Music and Universal Music Publishing are believed to “own property” of Kelly that could be used to pay more than $500,000 owed in victim compensation and fines.

While it’s unclear how much of Kelly’s funds the two companies hold, a March court ruling found Kelly’s 2020 royalty account with Sony was $1,544,333.

Following his 30-year prison sentence last summer on sex trafficking and racketeering charges, Kelly was ordered to pay more than $480,000 in fines and compensation. Another $42,000 was raised in February for various child pornography convictions.

These files are recent efforts to collect convictions passed last summer (sex trafficking and extortion convictions in New York) and February (child pornography convictions in Illinois). Last fall, prosecutors seized nearly $30,000 from Kelly’s jail account.

In a statement released June 1, Kelly’s lead attorney, Jennifer Bonjean, told Billboard that she and her client believe the restitution order against him was wrong and would be overturned on appeal. Still, Bonjean also said that she and her client had “no opinion” about prosecutors seeking to seize funds from Sony Music and Universal Music Publishing Group.