NEW YORK – Jelani Maraj, brother of Nicki Minaj, was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for the rape of his stepdaughter.
“You raped this child. You raped her over and over again,” the judge said, Fox News reported.
His stepdaughter, who was 11 years old at the time of the acts, told the courts in 2017 that Maraj raped her “repeatedly between April and November of 2015,” Newsday reported at the time.
The victim said Maraj sexually assaulted her at their home while her mother was at work.
Maraj denied the allegations. Moreover, his defense claimed the victim’s mother fabricated the crimes in order to extort $25 million from his famous sister, Minaj.
Minaj never testified during the trial — despite assertions she would by her brother’s defense team.
The girl told the court that Maraj threatened her and slapped her if she refused his advances.
“I thought he would send me away from my mother. … That’s what he said would actually happen. So I didn’t say anything,” the girl explained to the prosecutor, Emma Slane.
The victim also testified her brother walked in before Maraj was planning to abuse her and she told her sibling to “keep quiet or Jelani would hit us or we would get sent away because Jelani would deny it.”
The boy told a child protection worker what he saw, which helped corroborate the victim’s account, and eventually led to Maraj’s arrest in December 2015.