- Last Updated: 5:33 PM, May 30, 2012
- Posted: 5:31 PM, May 30, 2012
He was one tough old man -- who neither the Nazis nor a trio of robbers could break.
Jurors in an Upper East Side torture-robbery trial today viewed heartbreaking autopsy photos of Auschwitz survivor and former disco owner Guido Felix Brinkmann.
The 90-year-old Brinkmann was murdered three years ago in his E. 65th St. apartment, dying with his hands bound behind his back and a teeth-baring grimace on his bloodied face -- refusing until his final breath to give up the combinations to his two safes no matter how hard his robbers beat him.
"This goes to the People's theory that Mr. Brinkmann suffered a brutal beating at the hands of his attackers," Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan told defense lawyers in allowing the gruesome photos into evidence.
"And that the reason he was beaten is that he wouldn't give up the combination of his safes -- this would seem to support that," the judge said of the photos.
On trial for Brinkmann's murder is Aljulah Cutts, 30, of The Bronx, linked to the robbery by his confession and his shirt, recovered covered with Brinkmann's blood.
His two alleged accomplices are his brother Hasib, 33, and an alleged prostitute Angela Murray, 33, both of The Bronx, who cases are still pending. Murray is accused of masterminding the theft -- gaining entry to Brinkmann's apartment with a promise of a sex act .
"I think I may have put pressure on the old man's throat when I carried him, but I didn't mean it," Cutts told cops in a written confession. "I was just trying to move him."
Brinkmann -- who owned the disco Adam's Apple in the '70s and survived three Nazi death camps -- suffered cuts, bruises and swelling across his entire body, along with five broken ribs. He died as a result of strangulation, a coroner testified today.
Ironically, the three robbers chose the larger of the two safes to carry out of the apartment with them -- only to find nothing inside but tax records. Brinkmann's cash was in the smaller safe -- which the greedy robbers left behind.
Defense lawyer Daniel Scott contends that the confession was coerced and that the shirt means nothing, since it was recovered from a floor. Cutts will testify on his own behalf tomorrow morning, his lawyer said.