A serial killer Stephen Port’s ex-drug dealer has been jailed for at least 31 years for the “wicked and callous” murder of a former Bond film actor.
Gerald Matovu, 26, hooked up with Eric Michels, 54, via gay dating app Grindr in August last year.
He plied him with a fatal dose of GHB at his home in Bolton Road, Chessington, Surrey, and then made off with his bank card details and other belongings.
Mr Michels, who had an uncredited role in Skyfall, was found dead in bed by his 14-year-old daughter.
He was one of 12 men targeted by Matovu and his lover, Brandon Dunbar, 24, over a 19-month period, jurors heard.
Following an Old Bailey trial, Matovu was found guilty of businessman Mr Michels’ murder and 38 other offences, while Dunbar was convicted of 23 offences.
Jurors were not told about Matovu’s past connection with former chef Port, 44, from Barking, east London, who had also targeted victims through Grindr and killed four of them with GHB overdoses.
Matovu was jailed for life with a minimum term of 31 years by Judge Anne Molyneux QC.
Co-defendant Dunbar was sentenced to 18 years in jail with five on extended licence for his role in the “calculated” scheme to drug and steal from men they met through Grindr.
The judge told the pair: “All were victims of your total lack of respect and callous behaviour. You calculated they would be too embarrassed to report the full extent of what happened to them.
“They showed dignity and courage in giving evidence in the trial.”
She told Matovu: “You had already rendered five men unconscious using G(HB). You were an experienced poisoner and were aware of the dangers of the drug.
“You knew as far back as 2015 that it could be used to take advantage of others. You knew it could be life-threatening.
Detective Inspector Mark Richards, of Scotland Yard, said: “Today’s sentencing marks the end of a long and complex police investigation and the nature of Matovu and Dunbar’s crimes mean their lengthy jail terms are more than justified.
“The pair had a well-rehearsed plan to take advantage of men they met through social networking sites and apps such as Grindr to steal their property. This was their overwhelming motive, rather than sexual assault. Matovu was described in evidence as a hustler, a liar and a thief – apt words.
“Their method in the majority of cases was to drug their victim with enough GBL to render them unconscious so they could then search their homes, selecting items of interest and photographing bank cards and personal documents for subsequent fraudulent use. They did this at their leisure, sometimes spending hours at an address.
“But Mr Michels was different – Matovu gave him a fatal dose of GBL. Despicably, while Mr Michels lay dead or dying, Matovu raided his address of many of his belongings, leaving his devastated family to find his body the following day.
“Just three days later Matovu and Dunbar targeted another man at Dunbar’s flat. When he was no longer of use to them, it is suspected they dragged his prone naked body out into the street and abandoned him on a pile of rubbish bags.
“Attending officers were quickly able to join those two events together, and enquiries then revealed a whole host of other victims. Matovu and Dunbar had done very little to cover their tracks, their only focus moving onto their next victim and what else they could steal. There is every chance there are more victims out there – please have the confidence to come forward and report this, or any similar crime to us.”