Embattled singer R. Kelly is set to request permission to travel to the United Arab Emirates to honor previously-scheduled concert commitments in Dubai.
The I Believe I Can Fly hitmaker was ordered to surrender his passport as part of his bail conditions in February, after he was indicted on 10 felony counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse against four victims, three of whom were allegedly minors at the time of the incidents.
He is due to return to court on Friday, and during the hearing, his lawyer Steve Greenberg plans to ask the judge to lift his client’s travel ban to allow Kelly to take a private jet to Dubai next month so he can perform at a series of pre-booked private gigs.
According to ABC News, the legal papers will reference three to five shows scheduled to take place between 17 and 19 April.
“He needs to be able to work like anyone else who is free on bond, and the law needs to be adaptable,” Greenberg told the Chicago Sun-Times of his motion, explaining he would offer to travel with the singer to act as a “chaperone”.
Greenberg had previously blamed Kelly’s financial woes on his damaged reputation following the January broadcast of the Surviving R. Kelly docuseries, which examined a string of decades-old allegations of sexual misconduct made against the R&B veteran.
He has denied all accusations of inappropriate conduct and vowed to clear his name, but the scandal has already cost him his record deal with Sony Music, as well as two shows in Germany, where promoters decided to cancel two April dates in the wake of Kelly’s indictment.
The disgraced star is also struggling to keep up with child support payments to his ex-wife, Andrea Kelly, who claims she hasn’t received any funds from him in months.
He was found in contempt of court in late February as a result of his repeated missed payments, and was jailed for three days earlier this month after failing to settle his debt of more than $160,000 to help care for their three children.
An anonymous donor covered the fee to secure Kelly’s release.