Music journalist Jim DeRogatis is fighting a bid to force him to testify at R. Kelly’s child pornography trial.
According to a court filing, the music reporter, who handed over a video he’d been sent that helped police form the 2008 case against the R&B singer, has been subpoenaed to take the stand.
Kelly currently faces charges of enticing minors for sex in this federal trial, which also seeks to fix a 2008 trial that saw the singer acquitted of child pornography charges, Billboard reports.
Lawyers for Kelly’s business manager Derrel McDavid – who is currently charged with conspiracy to rig Kelly’s 2008 child pornography trial – ordered DeRogatis, the author of “Soulless: The Case Against R Kelly,” to testify.
Lawyers for DeRogatis invoked constitutional and other protections for the press in arguing that the writer need not testify.
They claimed that calling the critic to testify could amount to “harassment or intimidation,” given that there were other ways to work the same facts DeRogatis can provide into evidence.
They also cited reports that a window in the DeRogatis family home was shot out after his newspaper reported on Kelly.
The reporter took the stand at Kelly’s 2008 trial but refused to answer questions, citing an Illinois law that shields reporters’ rights and the U.S. Constitution’s free press rights and right against self-incrimination.