R Kelly has blamed his ex-wife for his inability to pay child support, saying she is “destroying” his name.
The R&B singer was jailed on Wednesday by a judge in Chicago after failing to pay $161,000 (£122,000) in overdue child support for the three children he has with ex-wife Andrea Kelly.
The 52-year-old had appeared in court ready to pay part of the sum but the judge had wanted all of it to be paid and jailed Kelly until he could clear the debt.
Speaking to Gayle King of CBS This Morning, he said: “How can I pay child support if my ex-wife is destroying my name and I can’t work?”
He shouted and cried about the state of his finances and his “zero” relationship with the three children in the interview, which is being released in instalments.
He also accused unnamed people of stealing from his bank account, saying he was “tired of not knowing where my money was” but later added: “A lot of it is on me”.
He told King he had gone to his bank for the first time by himself about three weeks ago to discover he had $350,000 left, despite having been one of the best-selling music artists of all time.
R Kelly is due to appear in court again on the child support matter on 13 March.
The child support case is the latest court procedure involving Kelly – he faces 10 charges of aggravated sexual abuse relating to four women, including three who were underage at the time.
He was arrested on these matters in February, at which time his lawyer had described his finances as “a mess”.
He used an earlier instalment of the CBS interview to deny the sexual abuse allegations he faces, insisting he simply had a “big heart” and had been betrayed by others who wanted money.
At one point, he stood up and yelled: “I didn’t do this stuff! This is not me! I’m fighting for my ******g life!”
He earlier said that he had done “lots of things wrong” regarding his relationship with women but that he had apologised.
Kelly’s career began in 1993 and since then he has written numerous hits for himself and others, including Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga and Celine Dion.
(c) Sky News 2019: R Kelly blames ex-wife for ‘destroying’ his name