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R. Kelly’s three Grammys will not be rescinded — for now — Recording Academy CEO says

Despite the acts attached to Kelly, the singer’s three Grammys will remain with him for the time being.

Harvey Mason jr., CEO of The Recording Academy, poses for a portrait at Harvey Mason Media music production studios earlier this month in Burbank, California.
Harvey Mason jr., CEO of The Recording Academy, poses for a portrait at Harvey Mason Media music production studios earlier this month in Burbank, California.
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

BURBANK, Calif. — Recording Academy CEO Harvey Mason jr. says rumors about R. Kelly’s Grammys being rescinded now that the singer has a criminal conviction are just rumors at the moment.

R. Kelly might have his freedom taken away after his recent criminal conviction on sex trafficking charges, but the R&B superstar’s Grammys won’t be stripped from him — at least, for now.

Mason called Kelly’s actions “disturbing.”

The “I Believe I Can Fly” singer was convicted last month in New York. He was found guilty on nine counts, including racketeering. The 54-year-old singer had managed to avoid legal and professional consequences after years of reports that he sexually abused young women and children. He was also accused of making a recording of himself sexually abusing and urinating on a 14-year-old girl.

Despite the acts attached to Kelly, Mason said the singer’s three Grammys will remain with him for now. He, along with the academy, will continue to evaluate their decision with caution.

“I think it’s something that we’re going to need to take a good hard look at, have a lot of conversations about, work through and make a decision,” Mason said. In 1997, Kelly won Grammys in three different categories for “I Believe I Can Fly” from the “Space Jam” soundtrack.

“But right now, I think it’s something that is going to take a little bit more consideration before we can really dictate or decide,” he continued. “My initial feeling is we’re probably not a business that we want to be in of taking people’s awards back after they’ve been given. But we’ll take a good look at it and see.”

Only one trophy has been revoked in the 62-year history of the Grammys, according to the Recording Academy. The award to pop duo Milli Vanilli was stripped in 1990 after the group admitted to lip-synching the “Girl You Know It’s True” album.