Gerald Matovu

Gerald Matovu, a violent male who identifies as a trans woman, was convicted at the Old Bailey in July 2019 of the murder of Eric Michels.

Matovu, 26, was jailed for at least 31 years in September 2019.

Matovu was also convicted of a further 38 serious offences including assault by penetration, six counts of administering a noxious substance, seven thefts, six counts of having articles for fraud, assault occasioning bodily harm and drug possession.

At least 12 men had been targeted via the gay dating app Grindr by Matovu and an accomplice over a 19-month period. Just two days after killing Mr Michels, Matovu sexually assaulted and drugged another man using a syringe – the victim was found naked and unconscious in the street in east London.

The judge told Matovu “You knew as far back as 2015 that [the drug, GHB] could be used to take advantage of others. You knew it could be life-threatening. You are a highly dangerous predator.”

Mr Michels’ body was discovered in his bed at home in August 2018 by his 14 year old daughter. A syringe was found at the scene containing traces of GHB and both Mr Michels’ and Matovu’s DNA. One of the victim’s sons also spoke of how hearing Matovu accuse his dead father of rape (as a defence in court) was “soul-destroying”. The brothers also questioned how Matovu’s offending went unidentified despite several other victims making reports to police prior to the murder of Mr Michels.

In 2016, Matovu pleaded guilty to supplying mephedrone and GHB following the conviction of serial killer Stephen Port for raping and murdering four young gay men he targeted via Grindr between 2014 and 2015. The BBC reported that Matovu had actually drugged and stolen from the serial killer, and is suspected of being present at Port’s flat when one of his surviving rape victims was drugged.

Matovu denied knowing what Port planned to do with the drugs, and was sentenced to 12 months community service, 150 hours of unpaid work and 40 days of drug rehabilitation.

Despite reporting that Matovu “sought help with gender realignment, having identified as female since the age of eight” – at the time of writing, both the BBC and The Guardian used male pronouns to refer to Matovu. While on remand for the murder of Mr Michels, Matovu was held at HMP Wandsworth, a men’s prison.

Pink News did not include the information presented in court re Matovu’s trans identity and therefore used male pronouns throughout – an action they’d ordinarily report as a transphobic, misgendering hate crime if a woman were responsible for it.

According to the Daily Telegraph, Matovu’s lawyer told the court during mitigation that Matovu intended to seek gender reassignment while in prison. By self-identifying as female, Matovu could be entitled to a separate cell, be permitted to shower alone and apply for a transfer to a female prison.

Photo via Metropolitan Police

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