More Colorful Characters Descend on R. Kelly Trial

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As R. Kelly's child-pornography trail slowly turns into the 23rd chapter of Trapped in the Closet (except gravely serious and not funny at all), two men from Kansas City are en route to Chicago where they're expected to give an explosive press conference tomorrow that will purportedly be "big news" and "reveal all." Keith Murrell and Charles "Chuck" Freeman are former associates of Kelly and Lisa Van Allen (the woman who testified Monday that she'd partaken in videotaped threesomes with Kelly and his alleged underage victim) who have been accused by Kelly's lawyers of extortion and faking the sex tape at the center of the trial.

Neither has been called as a witness, but Van Allen mentioned their names in court on Monday and claimed that Kelly's business manager paid Murrell $20,000 to return a second sex tape featuring one of those threesomes (both men currently refuse to say if they know of any additional copies). Also, Freeman sued Kelly in 2002 for reneging on a deal to pay him $100,000 for recovering the sex tape at the center of this case (we certainly hope he lost because clearly he didn't do a very good job). "The truth lies in Kansas!," Freeman told the Chicago Sun-Times last night. "Everything will come out when we get to Chicago. It will be big news." He added cryptically, "There's more to this case than R. Kelly."

What the heck does that mean? We have no idea! Is any of this good news for R. Kelly? Probably not!

Can Kansas City duo shed light on alleged threesome tape? [Kelly Chronicles/Chicago Sun-Times]