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Katherine Jackson’s wrongful death lawsuit against AEG Live took an interesting turn Monday when two company executives were dismissed as defendants.

AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips and executive Paul Gongaware are no longer liable in the wrongful death lawsuit, in which she is claiming billions in damages.

The company as a whole is left as the sole defendant.

Katherine’s claim is that AEG was negligent in hiring Dr. Conrad Murray, who administered a lethal dose of Propofol to Michael Jackson in 2009.

Murray was subsequently convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2011 and sentenced to four years in prison, but a giant lawsuit against AEG followed.

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Michael Jackson, the late, great King of Pop, would have been 55 today.

The dominant entertainer of his generation, if not history, it's no surprise that his music and legacy continue to inspire passion among fans young and old.

The commemoration of MJ's birthday has, for the fifth consecutive year, sparked tributes to the icon from Gary, Ind., who passed away in June 2009.

He is remembered for dozens of hit songs that changed music forever, inspiring countless other artists and breaking every record in the business.

Michael was also known for personal eccentricities, a life constantly plagued by scandal and speculation, and for being charitable (see above).

Most of all, he would like to be remembered for raising three wonderful children. Prince, Blanket and especially Paris have felt his loss so deeply.

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The decision to hire Dr. Conrad Murray was Michael Jackson's alone, and the star kept AEG out of the loop, the imprisoned doctor says in a voicemail.

We take a break from North West picture debut coverage to update you on this ongoing saga, which took a surprising new twist thanks to Murray:

  • Bad Doc
  • Michael Jackson Trial Pic

TMZ has obtained the audio of what Murray recently told a friend, and if it were testimony in the singer's wrongful death trial, it would be a bombshell.

Because, according to Murray, Jackson felt the concert promotion company was run by a bunch of snakes ... who he tried to keep at arms length.

Doing time for involuntary manslaughter, Murray claims, matter of factly:

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A new collaboration from two music icons of different generations, Justin Bieber and Michael Jackson, called “Slave to the Rhythm,” has hit the Internet.

Listen to the mysterious new song from JB & MJ below:

Minds? Officially blown. So what's the deal here?

“Slave to the Rhythm” was a little-known Michael Jackson song that made its way online after his death. Michael’s vocals and lyrics remain intact here.

A heavier dance beat and Justin Bieber's contributions have been added, of course, making for a monster collaboration of unknown origin and authenticity.

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Debbie Rowe, the mother of Paris Jackson, wept while talking about her on the witness stand Thursday at the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial.

"Their father is dead," Debbie Rowe lamented.

Paris and Debbie Rowe

"I almost lost my daughter! She is devastated. She tried to kill herself. She is devastated. She has no life. She doesn't feel she has a life anymore."

Paris, 15, attempted suicide in early June.

She is still being treated in a facility for her emotional problems, ones Rowe believes have left her a shell of her former self, and at a loss for everything.

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Debbie Rowe took the stand at the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial today, making for an insightful and profoundly emotional experience.

Jackson's ex-wife was ordered to testify by AEG Live, who the icon's family is suing for billions, citing the concert promoters alleged liability for his demise.

The Jacksons say AEG was negligent by ignoring warning signs, pushing MJ more than he could take, and hiring Dr. Conrad Murray to oversee his health.

On the stand, Rowe found herself explaining Jackson's relationship with his doctors, and with drugs, which turns out to be the centerpiece of the case.

Through tears, she lamented his longtime battle with addiction, saying, "His fear of pain was incredible and I think the doctors took advantage in that way."

"Michael expected doctors to do no harm. Unfortunately, some doctors decided when Michael was in pain they would try to help him, and so he listened."

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Debbie Rowe is expected to testify at the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial that her ex-husband was addicted to Propofol 12 years before he died.

Debbie Rowe and Michael Jackson

At least twice in the '90s, doctors misused a drug similar to Propofol, enabling MJ to sleep through the night - or so TMZ reports she'll tell the jury.

Debbie Rowe will be called to testify by AEG Live, though she views herself as a hostile witness, as she feels AEG is largely responsible for MJ's death.

She is expected to say that in 1997, doctors administered Diprivan (an anesthetic and form of Propofol) to Michael in a Munich, Germany hotel room. 

Rowe will say the drug was administered specifically so Michael could sleep.

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New Michael Jackson material may be released this fall, according to reports, along with new material from the late Freddie Mercury of Queen.

Together!

Michael Jackson and Freddy Mercury

Three unearthed tracks Michael recorded with Freddie back in 1983 in what was supposed to be collaborative effort are apparently set to be released.

Initially, the collaboration fell apart due to the "constraints" of the two music superstars' busy schedules, as well as creative differences (so to speak).

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Gene Simmons has rekindled his feud with Michael Jackson fans, refusing to dial down his previously-expressed belief that MJ was a child molester.

  • A Gene Simmons Image
  • Farewell, Michael Jackson

A fan group supporting Wade Robson - the dancer-choreographer who recently accused Jackson of child sex abuse - reached out to the KISS rocker.

Their Twitter exchange drew the wrath of Jackson fans, but Simmons, who was booted from an MJ tribute concert in 2011, would not back off.

The glam rocker retorted, “In 80s, i went out w/Diana Ross, we visited Michael Jackson. You don’t know me. Don’t make up things about me.”

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Wade Robson, who accuses Michael Jackson of molesting him, says a big part of coming forward was that he wants to help child sex abuse victims.

  • Wade Robson Picture
  • An MJJ Producion

The 30-year-old dancer/choreographer is launching his own foundation to help child sex abuse victims through new age healing, according to reports.

Robson founded a non-profit organization called "Hearts in Our Hands" on July 1.

His rep says the group will be dedicated to preventing abuse, and taking a holistic approach - meditation, therapy, yoga - to treating abuse victims.

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