'I'm fighting for my life' - R Kelly sobs in first interview after latest sexual abuse charges

R Kelly.
R Kelly sobs through first interview since latest sex abuse charges. Photo credit: CBS

Controversial R&B artist R Kelly pleaded with the public to believe him through tears as he made his first television appearance since fresh sexual abuse charges were laid against him.

The 'Ignition' singer appeared in court last month for allegedly sexually assaulting four women, including three who were underage. Evidence against Kelly included a video which reportedly shows him sexually assaulting a minor. 

"People are going back to my past... and adding it to all of the stuff going on now, to make it all feel real to people," he told CBS's Gayle King.

"I beat my case," he said, referring to the 2008 trial that saw him acquitted of child pornography charges.

"You can't double jeopardy me like that. It's not fair."

A documentary series called Surviving R Kelly recently re-examined the Grammy-winner's infamous history of sex crime allegations, providing new testimonials from alleged victims and members of Kelly's inner circle.

When probed about accusations that he held women against their will in his basement and abused them, Kelly became increasingly emotional and angry.

"Quit playing," he said, eyeballing the camera.

"I didn't do this stuff. This is not me.

"I'm fighting for my f**king life," he added, choking back tears and thumping his fist on his chest.

Kelly pleaded not guilty to the most recent charges laid against him, and was granted bail for US$1 million (NZ$1.5 million).