The bombshell development in the Kelly saga came after a judge approved a no-bail arrest warrant for the 52-year-old, who for decades has faced accusations of child pornography, sex with minors, operating a sex cult and sexual battery.
Kelly surrendered to Chicago police at approximately 8:15 p.m. (02:15 GMT) and was taken into custody.
He will appear in court tomorrow afternoon, a police spokesman said.
Kim Foxx — the state’s attorney for Cook County, which includes Chicago — told journalists the alleged crimes occurred between 1998 and 2010. A court clerk had earlier told AFP nine of the charges involve minors ages 13 to 16.
The felony charges carry three to seven years of prison time per count, Foxx said.
After Kelly was booked his lawyer Steve Greenberg dismissed the charges, saying they were based on old and false accusations.
Greenberg vowed the musician would be “vindicated,” saying, “I think all of the women are lying.”
“Everybody’s trying to profit off of R. Kelly.”
An arraignment was scheduled for March 8 in Chicago, where he resides, a Cook County clerk said earlier.
It is the second time Chicago prosecutors have charged Kelly with a sex crime: after a dramatic trial that also involved a sex tape, the musician was acquitted of 21 counts of child pornography in 2008.
Greenberg said one of the charges involved the same victim as in that trial.