In a pan, on the stove-top, dry-roast the star anise, cloves, fennel, peppercorns and cinnamon for a minute, until the whole spices are fragrant. Grind the spices in a mortal and pestle or in a masala or coffee grinder. Keep the spice mix aside.
In the bowl of your slow cooker (I used my Instant Pot), combine the chicken with the ginger, garlic, ground spice mix, red chilies, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and honey. Make sure the chicken is well coated with all the seasonings and sauces.
In the 'slow cook' mode, cook the chicken for 2.5 hours on 'High' (see notes).
Once done, the chicken will be tender and nearly falling off the bone.
Now, switch to 'Saute' mode in the 'Less' setting.
In a cup, mix together the corn starch and a couple teaspoons water to form a slurry. Add this to the chicken, giving it a few gentle stirs.
Let it simmer for a few minutes until the sauce thickens. Turn it off after 5 minutes.
Serve with a garnish of sesame seeds and chopped scallion stalks.