R. Kelly's ex Drea has insisted that while she was married to the singer, she was "never a wife".

The pair were wed for 13 years but divorced in 2009, with Drea, real name Andrea Kelly, later going public with the alleged domestic abuse she received in their relationship.

During an interview with the New York Post's Page Six column, Drea - who shares three children with her former husband - said that despite the star's wealth and fame, being married to him was a "lonely" experience.

“Money does not bring you happiness; it is a lonely place,” she said. "I still say, ‘I was married but I was never a wife,’ and I don’t want anyone (else to experience that)... especially the younger generation.

"At the end of the day, what you need to understand is that when it’s over, they will let you know his damn money is his damn money and they leave with their money."

Kelly remains behind bars in Chicago, where he is facing multiple counts of sexual abuse, while he is also set to stand trial for racketeering and sex trafficking in New York.

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.