Cameras will be allowed in the courtroom during the trial and pretrial hearings in R Kelly’s sexual abuse case, but the R&B singer's accusers cannot be photographed or filmed without their consent, a judge has ruled.

The Grammy award-winning singer did not attend the brief hearing in Chicago’s Cook County Circuit Court, but his lawyer welcomed cameras in the courtroom.

R. Kelly’s defence lawyer, Steve Greenberg. Credit: Matt Marton/AP

R. Kelly’s defence lawyer, Steve Greenberg said: "Mr Kelly wants this to be an open and transparent process."

He added: "So far there have been rumours, there have been allegations … but with cameras in the courtroom, everyone will see what really happens."

Associate Judge Lawrence Flood said cameras will be allowed going forward, beginning with the next hearing on March 22.

He also said two of Kelly's accusers have already indicated they do not want to be photographed, filmed, or have their voices recorded in court.

R. Kelly pleaded not guilty to aggravated sexual abuse. Credit: Cook County Sheriff’s Office/AP

Kelly, 52, has pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse pertaining to four women, including three who were minors at the time the abuse allegedly occurred.

The abuse in question is alleged to have occurred over roughly a decade, starting in the late 1990s.