R Kelly’s 2 girlfriends defend singer, say parents are out for money

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Los Angeles – R Kelly’s two live-in girlfriends say they are not being held against their will by the R&B star, and allegations that they are stem from their parents’ efforts to solicit money.

Azriel Clary, 21, and Joycelyn Savage, 23, defended the 52-year-old singer on Thursday in a joint sit-down with CBS News’ Gayle King. It’s the second part of King’s emotional “CBS This Morning” interviews with Kelly, which showcased the embattled star’s outbursts as he addressed sexual abuse allegations against him.

Kelly was in the room during the women’s portion of the interview and attempted to stop it on several occasions, King said.

“We both have our individual relationships with him and we all are family all together,” Clary told King. “We have our moments where we sit and watch movies all together, we go to amusement parks all together,” Clary told King.

The women’s parents are among the outspoken critics of Kelly, who accuse him of having sex with underage girls. He was arrested on 10 counts of sexual abuse last month. (He was arrested again on Wednesday over unpaid child support and remained in jail Thursday morning.)

When King asked about her sexual relationship with the musician, Clary said she was not doing the interview to talk about her personal life. Clary cited people all over the world having multiple girlfriends, saying her relationship with Kelly was “no different.”

Clary rejected allegations by her parents that she has been brainwashed and called her father “a manipulative liar.”

In fact, she insisted that her parents told her to lie about her age when she first met Kelly at age 17 – around the time her parents said they found text messages between Clary and Kelly that indicated they were having sex. Clary said they also encouraged her to take photos and sexually explicit videos with him in case they needed to blackmail him.

“Our parents are basically out here trying to get money and scam because they didn’t agree on what happened with music or whatever it could be. They’re just very upset,” Savage said, backing up Clary’s account.

“I’m crying because you guys don’t know the truth,” Clary said through tears. “You guys are believing some … facade that our parents are saying. This is all … lies for money and if you can’t see that, you’re ignorant and you’re stupid as … because you want to be. All because that is the world we live in. Negativity sells. Gossip is what sells. Rumors are what sell.”

King insisted that the decades of allegations against Kelly are more than that, but Clary and Savage said they would speak only to their own experience with their own parents.

Talking later with her “CBS This Morning” co-hosts, King said that both the women’s parents denied ever asking for or receiving money from Kelly.

CBS will broadcast “The Gayle King Interview with R Kelly,” a one-hour prime-time special featuring exclusive interviews with the singer, Clary and Savage, on Friday.

-(tca/dpa