Nicki Minaj's brother convicted of raping a child

Jelani Maraj Nicki Minaj

The brother of rapper Nicki Minaj was convicted Thursday of raping his 11-year-old stepdaughter on multiple occasions in their NY home.

The Long Island newspaper, Newsday, reported that Maraj, 38, was convicted of a felony charge of predatory sexual assault on a child and endangering her welfare.

His trial kicked off at Nassau County Supreme Court in Long Island on 19 October (17), when his attorney David Schwartz accused the child's mother, Jelani's estranged wife Jacqueline Robinson, of setting him up as part of a $25 million (£19 million) extortion plot, just four months after they Wednesday.

Maraj was arrested in early December 2015. He faces 25 years to life in prison.

Maraj's attorney in the case, David Schwartz, has not yet responded to the verdict, so it is not yet known whether his client intends to launch an appeal. He is now in Nassau County Jail and is set to be sentenced next month.

The prosecutor said DNA evidence recovered from the girl's pajama trousers was linked to Maraj.

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Semen found on the victim's pajamas was crucial evidence.

Soon after his arrest in 2015, Maraj was released from custody on $100,000 bail, reportedly backed by two of his sister's homes. She told jurors Maraj treated her as if she was his own daughter before the abuse began. "The amount of evidence we have that wasn't allowed in this case is unbelievable".

Carol Maraj, Jelani's mother, in her testimony said that the victim's mother said, "It's gonna take lots of money to get out of this one", according to People.com. One juror told reporters that the young girl's testimony was hard to listen to.

Maraj's ex-wife vehemently denied this allegation. A scientist testified the DNA was a 1 in 291 billion match to Maraj.

The attorney also said the $25 million demand was rejected, and his firm never filed a lawsuit because the girl's mother fired them because she didn't like their strategy. He will be sentenced on December 14.

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