By Diane Anderson-Minshall
Originally published on Advocate.com October 10 2012 6:28 PM ET
Lawyers for Renato Seabra, the hunky Portuguese model currently on trial for stomping his boyfriend to death in New York, offered some unusual defense theories during the trial's opening statements. According to the New York Daily News, attorney Rubin Sinins alleges that Seabra, 21, was so "tortured" by his romance with much older, renown journalist and LGBT activist Carlos Castro that he beat and stomped the man to death, castrated him with a corkscrew, and then wore the victim's testicles like bracelets on his wrists to "harness" their power and extract the "virus" of homosexuality as ordered by God.
“He put one on each wrist," Sinins said. "He did this for his protection. He could also harness the power. He wandered the streets of Manhattan, touching people, because he had the power to cure people from AIDS, because he had the power to cure them."
Sinins agued that the model had a sudden psychotic break, which explains why he confessed to police. "He wanted to explain why he killed Mr. Castro, because he thought what he had done was right."
While Seabra's team is pushing for a not guilty by reason of insanity verdict (which would mean he'd go to a psychiatric facility instead of prison), the prosecution certainly isn't buying it.
Assistant District Attorney Maxine Rosenthal insinuated that Seabra was a golddigger who "wanted to pursue a career in modeling. He want to be famous and make money. He also wanted nice things — clothes, electronics, gifts for his family. He wanted to eat in nice restaurants. When Carlos Castro showed up in Renato Seabra's life, he saw a means to an end and he got on board."
Castro allegedly flew the young man to the U.S. from Portugal to meet with model agents in New York and their initial weeks in New York seemed idyllic to friends, according to the Daily News. But Castro's friends testified that the two began to fight after Seabra was caught hooking up with women and telling Castro that he was no longer gay, according to the Daily News' Janon Fisher. Castro reportedly booked his lover an early flight home that night. Rosenthal said that was clear indication that the fling was over.
After a marathon fight that followed, Rosenthal said that Seabra beat Castro with a computer monitor because the man was dumping him: "He knew he was beating, stomping, and mutilating Carlos Castro. And he knew it was wrong."