NEW YORK POST — Cops are looking for two mystery men who visited a prominent gay public-relations executive days before he was found dead Monday, strangled in his own bed.
Martin Barreto, 49, a former aide to then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani, was discovered naked with KY Jelly and a condom next to his body, authorities said.
The doorman and superintendent in his Greenwich Village apartment building made the horrifying discovery after Barreto’s business partner became worried when he failed to answer his phone or come to work Monday.
Barreto worked in Giuliani’s press office from 1994 through 1995, where he was in charge of communicating with Spanish-language media and helped organize Hispanic support for the mayor’s immigration policies, said former Giuliani press secretary Cristyne Nicholas.
"He was very gentle, very loving and just a sweet, sweet guy," said Nicholas, who recalled him volunteering to work late and on weekends. "I can’t imagine him hurting a fly."
Barreto, a distant relative of former Nicaraguan President Violeta Barros de Chamorro, lived with a cousin in the high-security building, but was alone Saturday night when he invited a stranger up, authorities said.
The man stayed briefly, and two hours later another visitor arrived, staying only 10 to 15 minutes.
Nothing was taken from the apartment – ruling out a robbery motive, authorities said.
Officials are looking into whether his crushed larynx was the result of rough sex gone horribly wrong. Barreto had used escort services in the past, a source said.
Barreto’s body is expected to be shipped back to his distraught parents in Nicaragua.
The former journalist, described as gracious and kind-hearted, attended boarding school in New England as a youth, then graduated from liberal-elite Brown University.
He was a close friend of jetsetter Bianca Jagger and knew John Kennedy Jr. from their days together at Brown, recalled Roxanna Brightwell, his partner at Barreto & Brightwell Associates.
He had lodged four harassment complaints against a former boyfriend, but police don’t suspect that man