A Manhattan judge sentenced 2 gay male prostitutes to 25 years to life each for murdering one of their regular customers in his Chelsea apartment.
33-year-old Edwin Faulkner, left, and Juan Carlos Martinez-Herrera, 35, will spend the rest of their natural lives in prison.
Justice Bonnie Wittner sentenced the men in a Manhattan courtroom on Wednesday.
Faulkner and Martinez-Herrera choked and robbed John Laubach, 57, in his W. 22nd St. apartment on March 2, 2012, the NY Daily News reports.
“He was my client, we had sex, we come a lot of times to his apartment. We had a deal; he paid to have sex with me,” Martinez-Herrera testified in New York Criminal Court.
“When you’re a prostitute you meet all kinds of men. Jack (the couple’s nickname for Mr Laubach) liked to s**k my d**k, used candles on my skin, he liked to get choked and he liked an arm around his neck.
“I found him old and unattractive, he was only a client. The only time I took from Jack was when he was dead,” Martinez-Herrera said.
Judge Wittner said the defendants took advantage of Laubach’s kind nature.
“He let them shower there — he talked to them. He let them leave their clothes there,” Wittner said in open court.
“They dispassionately tied a man to his bed — someone who they have a personal and intimate relationship with, albeit an unconventional one,” Assistant District Attorney Lanita Hobbs said at the sentencing hearing.
The men pawned Laubach’s jewelry and other valuables before fleeing to Miami.
Two friends of the defendants were thrown out of the courtroom after they shouted “shame” at the judge following the sentencing.
“For this community to befriend these … so-called victims is quite amazing to me,” Wittner said.
Steven Kopf, 52, a longtime friend of the deceased, said Martinez-Herrera was pretending to be transgender to gain sympathy from NY’s gay-friendly media.
Martinez-Herrera, who wore men’s clothing when he was arrested, showed up in court wearing long hair and speaking in a feminine tone.
“Juan Carlos, you are nothing more than a manipulative, self-serving, greedy little bitch who is faking your transgenderness,” Kopf said at the hearing.