Pain and Gain

A group of bodybuilders are at the center of one of Miami's most notorious crimes: a complicated and deadly plot that involved kidnapping, money and murder

Produced by Chuck Stevenson, Jamie Stolz, Tamara Weitzman and Alicia Tejada

MIAMI -- Zsuzsanna Griga will never forget the kidnapping of her brother, Frank, and his girlfriend, Krisztina Furton in 1995.

"...he loved fast cars, beautiful girls and life," Griga said. "She was very beautiful. She was only 23 years old. My heart breaks when I think of what she went through."

Felix Jimenez, now retired from the Metro-Dade Police homicide department, was the lead detective on the case.

"Very handsome couple, they looked like they were made for each other," Jimenez explained. "Frank was the American success story -- an immigrant, came to this country with $10 dollars in his pocket and made millions."

He came from Budapest, Hungary, and found a minimum wage job in New York City.

 

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Frank Griga and Krisztina Furton
Zsuzsanna Griga
 

"It was like a service station ... he was changing the oil, washing cars," Zsuzsanna Griga explained. "What he accomplished ... should make everyone proud because he went from nowhere to a millionaire on his own just by using his own resources."

In fewer than 10 years, Frank was living in an upscale Miami enclave called "Golden Beach" and running a phone sex line empire. He was on top of the world until May 24, 1995.

"I started calling him and he wouldn't pick up the phone," Zsuzsanna Griga said. "I kind of knew that something really bad happened then..."

The disappearance of Frank and Krisztina would become one of Miami's most notorious crimes. But who would want to kidnap them?

"How did this all go down?" Roberts asked Jimenez.

"So we got a call that there was a missing -- a wealthy couple that was missing out of Golden Beach," he explained. "That was a little strange because in homicide we need a crime scene. We need a dead body to respond to. They're few and far between when there's actually a missing person that we would respond. It has to be highly suspicious circumstances. And it so happened in this case there was."

At first, the detectives hoped they could find Frank and Krisztina alive.

"...the missing Hungarian couple had said that they were going to the Bahamas the -- the-- following day. So all their friends assumed that the reason they weren't home was because they were in the Bahamas," said Jimenez.

All that changed, though, when a police made a stunning discovery.

"Their Lamborghini was found in an abandoned, wooded area far outside of Miami," said Jimenez.

"At this point, we realized that something bad -- something bad had happened to this couple," said Sam Garafalo.

Garafalo, also retired, worked the case for his boss, Felix Jimenez. They are now both CBS News consultants.

"We got information and -- as soon as we got it, we ended up going to Golden Beach," he said.

"So you have a missing Hungarian couple and a Lamborghini," Roberts noted.

"We had more than that. We had a next door neighbor ... that had actually been to the house the last time they were seen alive and they invited her in and introduced her to two muscle-bound men that were driving a gold Mercedes and told them they were going out to dinner to discuss a business deal," said Jimenez.

The neighbor would tell police she'd met the driver of the gold Mercedes and knew his name: Danny Lugo.

"Danny was a big muscular guy," said Jimenez.

Police would soon learn that Lugo was a burley ex-convict who had served time for running a phony loan scam operation. After his release, he became the manager of a suburban Miami health club called Sun Gym.

"This is where the Sun Gym was located. This is what we would call the gang headquarters," said Jimenez.

"Danny Lugo was a Puerto Rican-Cuban kid from the Bronx," added Garafalo.

"He thought he was smarter than anybody else," Jimenez added. "He had a way of convincing people to do things they didn't want to do."

 

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Danny Lugo and Adrian Doorbal
48 Hours
 

The investigation into Frank and Krisztina's disappearance continued. Detectives learned Lugo was the leader of a group made up of drifters and petty thieves who hung out at the Sun Gym. His main partner in crime was another muscle head, Adrian Doorbal.

"Adrian Doorbal was Danny Lugo's protege," said Jimenez.

"Doorbal was just an evil, he reminded me of just an evil guy," said Garafalo.

"He was a steroid freak. ... He's like 5 foot 7 tall and 5 foot 7 wide," Jimenez continued. "He'd do anything and everything that Danny Lugo told him to do."

In May 1995, Danny Lugo and Adrian Doorbal would be at the center of one of the most notorious crimes in Miami history: a complicated and deadly plot that involved kidnapping, money and murder.

Eighteen years later, the story was too much for Hollywood to resist. In the movie "Pain and Gain", Lugo is portrayed by Mark Wahlberg. The film, released by Paramount Pictures, is part of Viacom, a company affiliated with CBS.

The movie captures what Lugo was about in real life: his infatuation with getting rich, says Patty Barrientos, who worked alongside him at a gym.

"He'd say... 'I'm gonna have a lot of money... I wanna grow, I wanna be somebody very big...'" said Barrientos.

Asked if he was money hungry, Barrientos told Roberts, "Yes."

With the little money he had, he spent a lot of it at the Solid Gold Strip Club. It was here he began an affair with a one-time Penthouse model-turned exotic dancer named Sabina Petrescu.

"She was a very, very attractive woman," Jimenez said. "She fell for Danny and believed everything he told her."

Petrescu was another recent immigrant who made a splash in Miami. She was a finalist in the Miss Romania contest in 1990, then came to the United States to begin a modeling career. She made it onto the pages of Penthouse magazine, but filled the rest of her time as an exotic dancer.

"Danny treated her well ... he gave her a BMW," said Jimenez.

Petrescu would play a crucial role as police continued gathering more evidence connecting Lugo and Doorbal to the disappearance of Frank and Krisztina.

"We have the housekeeper who was also at the home when the -- the musclemen were there. We have the next door neighbor. We show them photographs. They make identification. So we have a lot to go on," said Jimenez.

Search warrants were executed for the homes of Lugo and Doorbal and their associates.

"I mean we had so many cops it wasn't even funny," said Garafalo.

"... in fact we mobilized right in this park," Jimenez pointed out.

Police quickly hit pay dirt in the apartment of Danny Lugo's girlfriend.

"There was some damning evidence there ... bloody clothing belonging to Frank and Krisztina, there was the kidnap kit -- a case with duct tape ...guns, [stun guns], handcuffs -- there was so much evidence in that apartment," said Jimenez.

Soon Adrian Doorbal was in custody and refused to talk to police.

"The main guy that we're after, Danny Lugo, is nowhere to be found," said Jimenez.

Danny Lugo had given them the slip.

THE SEARCH FOR DANNY LUGO

"This case was all over the news," retired homicide detective Felix Jimenez told Troy Roberts. "Miami was riveted as to this attractive Hungarian couple ... you know, this yellow Lamborghini found in the Everglades and that they're missing and they continue to be missing."

But detectives had lost their lead suspect, Danny Lugo.

"Lugo's gone, we have a warrant for his arrest," Jimenez said. "He's just vanished. We don't know where he is."

They did have one good lead.

"We had his girlfriend, Sabina Petrescu," said Jimenez.

Sabina Petrescu, the magazine model-turned stripper, had quite a story to tell. She said her boyfriend wasn't a criminal. He told her he was a CIA agent.

"Number one, she was smitten with Danny Lugo, and number two, I think she believed what he was saying -- that he was a CIA operative -- that he was working for the U.S. government in kidnapping people that were dangerous to this country," said Jimenez.

Danny Lugo had convinced her he was a spy on a secret mission. So for now, she wouldn't tell detectives where Lugo was. But it would be just a matter of time.

In an incredible twist of fate, detectives in another department at Metro-Dade police had also been looking at Danny Lugo and Adrian Doorbal. Their case was the bizarre kidnapping of another Miami millionaire. Now, Lugo and Doorbal were front and center of two cases.

The Miami millionaire was Marc Schiller, an accountant.

"He was Argentinean born, grew up in the U.S., went to school, got his CPA license, he had a medical billing business that did very well," Jimenez explained.

The two crimes would become one huge case -- a case that Judge Alex Ferrer, now TV's "Judge Alex", and Miami-Dade prosecutor Gail Levine would never forget.

"This case was what made me who I am today, a career prosecutor," said Levine.

"Of all the cases I've tried this is by far the most fascinating case," said Ferrer.

Schiller would eventually tell police a wild story -- that five months before the murders of Frank and Krisztina, Schiller himself had been grabbed by a gang. Bound and gagged, he'd be dumped at a warehouse and held for more than a month.

"This is a warehouse that was rented by one of the members of the Sun Gym Gang," Jimenez told Roberts as they stood outside the building.

"They drove the van with Schiller inside into the warehouse."

"Mark Schiller was the perfect victim because he was involved in something that was illegal," said Levine.

"I think he got greedy and started to get involved in Medicare fraud," said Jimenez.

Danny Lugo learned about Schiller from Jorge Delgado, who also worked out at Sun Gym. Schiller and Delgado had been in business.

"Him and Jorge Delgado started a mortgage business together," said Jimenez.

But business went badly, and later Schiller and Delgado had a falling out over a deal. Delgado wanted revenge and told Lugo that Schiller would be an easy mark.

"They basically go 'He's not goin' to the cops ... he's involved in Medicare fraud. We'll shake him down...'" said Ferrer.

So what was the plan?" Roberts asked Levine.

"The plan was actually very simple: kidnap Marc Schiller, have him write his own ransom and then kill him," she replied.

"Simple as that?" Roberts asked.

"Simple as that," said Levine.

But catching Schiller to shake him down was tougher than it looked.

"It would be funny if it wasn't so tragic ... because they made these stupid attempts," Ferrer explained. "They would hide in his yard under blankets like they were some kind of ninja ... waiting for him to come out and get the paper at five in the morning and they were gonna kidnap him ... only to be surprised that cars were coming down the street and lighting them up with their headlights...

"So then they're running through yards, screaming 'abort, abort like they're on some secret mission for the government," he continued.

Hollywood could not resist this crazy scene. The gang used costumes and comic book code names like Batman and Robin and tried to stage an accident to kidnap Schiller.

"They're waiting for him to drive by to stage this accident," Ferrer explained. "They turned the car off and as he's driving by they're cranking it and the car won't start and he goes driving by. So it's like the Keystone Cops gone bad."

Finally, after multiple attempts, the "gang that couldn't shoot straight" enlisted some serious muscle and planned to take Schiller down outside a restaurant he owned.

"They waited in a van and they had their biggest gym rats come out," said Levine.

A co-conspirator, who "48 Hours" agreed to keep anonymous, worked with the Sun Gym gang to kidnap Schiller.

"I'm a good hearted person. I just made a mistake," he told Roberts.

"I was pretty hardcore..." he said of his weightlifting.

"At your peak you could bench 475 pounds?" Roberts asked.

"505," he replied.

"505? How big were you?"

"I was like a lean 270 pounds," he said.

"Big guy... intimidating," Roberts commented.

"Yeah."

He was desperate for money and sometimes worked at the Sun Gym. In 1994, Lugo and his gang were offering cash for a little help.

"He told me, 'Look, I gotta talk to you about something,'" the co-conspirator continued. "'... he owes me money'... and 'I need you to come with me and help me collect.'"

He agreed, and in November of 1994, brought his gun.

"So you had your .45 with you?" Roberts asked.

"I always carry my firearm," he said.

"We were parked right there," the man said, standing with Roberts in the parking lot, "... and as soon as he came out of his restaurant, they saw him so they said... 'There he is, there he is...'"

"It was one of those days in Miami where a storm was coming in," Schiller recalled.

Schiller is a man who cheated death and whose harrowing ordeal is dramatized by actor Tony Shalhoub in a recent movie.

"Why are you alive?" Roberts asked Schiller.

"I guess its divine intervention. I can't explain it," he replied.

Schiller's nightmare started just as he was about to head for home after work.

"I walked out to my car ... as soon as I opened my door ... I'm grabbed from behind by three guys," said Schiller.

"... and as soon as they grabbed him the guy grabbed the steering wheel... he was screaming the co-conspirator told Roberts.

"They just kept punching me ... and they had a Taser... and they kept Tasering [sic] me," said Schiller.

"They were Tasing him," the co-conspirator continued. "He was screaming ... 'What do you want, what do you want with me, what are you doin?"

"At that point, they dragged me to the van -- a white van," Schiller said. "They handcuffed my hands behind my back."

"You must have been terrified," Roberts commented.

"I thought they were gonna take me and kill me," he said.

"They duct taped him... they put tape on his mouth ... and we took off right out of here," said the co-conspirator.

"When we got to the warehouse," said Schiller, "they called the boss."

The boss was Danny Lugo, the same man at the center of the Krisztina Furton-Frank Griga murder case.

"... told him, 'The eagle has landed.' I guess I was the eagle," said Schiller.

"When I left ... Schiller was sitting in the chair ... he was taped up -- hands and legs ... and they were beating on him," the co-conspirator told Roberts.

Schiller was tortured endlessly. Sometimes, it was with fire.

"Doorbal would yell, 'Fire! Fire!' but real sick," Schiller said. "And he would burn me, you know, burn my skin ... and then he'd do this again ... and he was laughing so hard he was crying."

Other times, they played Russian roulette.

"They would place a gun to his head, they would take a revolver and spin it and pull the trigger," Jimenez explained. "For the first couple weeks, he wasn't even allowed to use the bathroom. He would have to urinate and defecate on himself."

But the worst was yet to come.

"At this point they told me, 'Well if you don't give us a list of everything you have ... we're gonna bring your wife down here and rape her in front of you," said Schiller.

Schiller says he was allowed to make one phone call. He called his family, telling his wife to take their two young children and flee to Colombia. She chose not to call the police.

Asked why she didn't she call police, Schiller told Roberts, "I don't know. I think at that point, it was prudent not to."

And for some inexplicable reason, none of Schiller's employees, friends or extended family raised the alarm. With his family safely out of the country, Schiller was still suffering. Finally, the daily torture was too much. He gave up, giving the gang everything.

"I signed. They told me my death sentence," said Schiller.

"He was signing over everything, including his life," Levine said. "It was $1.2 million in cash and assets and a $2 million life insurance policy."

"And pretty soon they had everything the man owned. They moved into his house, they changed the pool contract to their name. They were living there ... and partying in his home," Ferrer explained. "And they were taking some of the furniture they liked and putting it into their own apartments, wearing his jewelry, driving his Dodge Viper, and his Mercedes ... and just basically living off his money. ... Well, at that point, you can't let the guy live ... so they decide he's gotta go."

Marc Schiller's Harrowing Ordeal

Having forced him to sign over his assets, the Sun Gym gang, led by Danny Lugo, was partying in Marc Schiller's house. In the Hollywood feature, "Pain and Gain", Mark Wahlberg's character depicts the depravity.

"They were living in the house. In my house," Schiller told Troy Roberts.

Despite his cooperation, Schiller still remained chained like an animal in the Miami warehouse.

"Schiller was tied to a pipe in a very small bathroom. That's where he spent the next 30 days, was handcuffed to that pipe," former homicide Felix Jimenez explained.

The businessman and father was living in kind of a hell associated with a Third World dungeon -- complete with racial slurs.

"They just told me, 'We got a matzo ball' ..." said Schiller.

"What does that mean?" Roberts asked.

"I guess they were referring to the fact I was Jewish," he replied.

Schiller can't forget the sick soundtrack that came with his daily beatings.

"They, I mean this whole time they were laughing uncontrollably. To them it was just a fun game," he said.

"While they were beating you?" Roberts asked.

"Yeah."

"Did any of your captors show you any kindness?"

"Yeah, the guy that was at night there, because they stopped feeding me," Schiller explained. "I was starved. I hadn't eaten for like three days. He brought me a can of a - canned ravioli, which I had to eat with my hands."

That would be one of the last meals the Sun Gym gang intended for Schiller to have as Lugo put his final plan into action.

"They give him alcohol to drink. Get him all drunk," said Judge Alex Ferrer.

"They plied you with alcohol for three straight days" Roberts noted to Schiller.

"It was probably more than that, it was probably like five days," he said.

"And then what did they do?"

"The last day? ... They set me in a chair, and they give me this concoction, a drink," said Schiller.

"Liquor, tequila, vodka and gave him sleeping pills. And eventually he passed out," said Jimenez.

Schiller was unconscious.

"They put him in his Toyota 4Runner, his SUV," said Ferrer.

"And they drove the car into a light pole. Doorbal was driving," Jimenez explained. "... and then douse the car with gasoline and set it on fire. And that was their attempt to kill him. They backed out about a block away to watch the car as it was engulfed in flames."

"The problem is, they don't buckle him in," Ferrer explained. "The flames revive him enough that he stumbles out of the car and towards the road."

The surprised Sun Gym gang moved in to finish off Marc Schiller.

"... and they see this guy that they just lit on fire standing by the side of the road and they yell, 'Run him over, run him over,'" said Ferrer.

"They drive forward and they try to run him over, they missed. But then they were able to back over him and then run over him again," said Jimenez.

"And they get back to their place, and they go, 'You think we killed him?' They're looking at the dent of the car, and they say, 'I don't know it's not a big dent, yeah but we ran him over, and we backed over him, I mean he must be dead,'" Ferrer continued.

Asked what he remembered next, Schiller told Roberts, "Waking up in a hospital."

It would be months before Schiller could grasp the full horror of how he ended up half dead at Jackson Memorial, Miami's top trauma center.

"I was in a coma when they picked me up," he told Roberts.

In the frenetic haze of the intensive care unit -- burned and bruised, his pelvis broken -- Marc Schiller tried to tell his story of abduction and torture to nurses, doctors -- anyone who might listen.

"Yeah, I told 'em I was kidnapped, and they go, 'No no, you were in a bad accident,'" he said. "And I go, 'No, no, no, no. I was kidnapped. And they just blew it off."

"How many times did you insist you had been kidnapped?" Roberts asked.

"About three and then I gave up," said Schiller.

"He's trying to convince the nurse to give him a phone, because he says he was kidnapped. And she just keeps going, 'No you weren't kidnapped, you were drunk, you hit a pole," said Ferrer.

"I knew they weren't gonna do anything,"said Schiller.

"Finally, she gives him the phone. He calls his lawyer," said Ferrer.

 

 

From there, it took just moments to figure out Marc Schiller needed a lot more than just a lawyer.

But even Ed Du Bois, with 50 years of experience as a private investigator, had never heard anything quite like Schiller's story.

"The call was unusual because the story was so bizarre," said Du Bois.

Du Bois met Schiller and believed his story. Soon, both men realized

Schiller had an even bigger problem: Lugo and Delgado were intent on finishing the job.

"I was a sitting duck," said Schiller.

"Did you fear that Delgado and Lugo were going to come to hospital to finish the job?" Roberts asked.

"Yeah. And my sister was there and my brother. And we were all in a panic," he said.

"And I said, 'The easy answer is for you to get out of the hospital," said Du Bois.

"Why didn't either of you go to the police at that point?" Roberts asked.

"Well ... we couldn't wait for the police," Du Bois replied.

Schiller's sister ripped the medical tubes from his arms.

"And the doctor said, 'You can't move him. He's in critical condition,'" said Schiller.

Schiller's brother and sister booked an air ambulance, grabbed their brother and bolted out of Miami, heading north -- not a minute too soon.

"We left at 8 o'clock in the morning. I guess they came at 10 to look for me, to kill us all, all three of us," said Schiller.

"Delgado and Lugo?" Roberts asked.

"Yeah, to the hospital," he replied.

The now desperate Sun Gym gang had tracked down their former captive.

"As they're walking the halls of Jackson Memorial Hospital looking for him, he's on an air ambulance flight to New York," said Ferrer.

A thousand miles from Miami, Marc Schiller, now supported by his family, began to heal; his body and bones fractured.

"First, I can't walk and second of all, who knows how many of these people are out there," he said.

Schiller would reunite with his family in Colombia. Weeks would pass, and, strangely, despite his ordeal, Schiller did not report it to police.

"What person gets kidnapped, held for a month, and when he finally gets free, leaves the country and doesn't call the police for four months?" Ferrer wondered.

"I think what's difficult to understand is why you did not go to the police sooner," Roberts commented to Schiller.

"I did," he said.

But according to authorities, it wasn't until April 1995, four months after his escape, that Schiller contacted police.

"'They want you to come to Miami to report it,'" Schiller said. "And I'm like, 'That's not happening.' ... who knows how many of these people are out there. ... I run into them by accident, I'm dead."

"Marc Schiller was asked to come and give testimony under oath four times ... and he stood up not only the prosecutor, but the police, to give that testimony four times," said prosecutor Gail Levine.

Prosecutor Levine would eventually lead the investigation and try the case. She says Schiller didn't come forward, because he had his own credibility issues due to his alleged involvement in Medicare fraud.

"The victim comes from Colombia. He has a lot of money, more money than

I would imagine most CPAs in Miami have," she explained.

"So after a while, you and Marc decided to go to the police?" Roberts asked Du Bois.

"Yeah," he replied.

But according to Du Bois and Schiller, when they finally did sit down with the cops...

"They've never listened at all," said Schiller.

"They never went out, never read them their rights, they never asked them a question, they never even said, 'Hello, here I am. We're breathin' down your neck,'" said Du Bois.

"They went to Metro-Dade's top unit that handles just crimes of this nature --just the biggest crimes. And they just didn't believe him," Ferrer explained.

It had been five months since Marc Schiller's ordeal. The muscle-headed gang had trashed his home and burned through his money. They were now hungry for another score.

"If the police had listened to him and investigated, Frank Griga and Krisztina Furton would probably be alive today," said Ferrer.

The Next Victims

By May of 1995, five months after his harrowing escape, the Sun Gym gang had burned through all of Marc Schiller's money.

"They'd been partying and going to strip clubs, and dropping thousands of dollars on strippers and it was all his money," said Judge Alex Ferrer.

With Schiller's fortune spent, the gang targeted their next victims: Frank Griga and his beautiful girlfriend, Krisztina Furton.

"There was never any pretense. They knew they were gonna kill them from the outset," said Ferrer.

The millionaire had it all.

"Lugo and Doorbal, on the other hand, they wanted to live that life," Ferrer continued.

The life Frank Griga had built on those dial tones of his sex phone empire.

"It made me very proud that my kid brother made it so big," Zsuzsanna Griga said.

"You know we were very poor when we were young..." she continued.

"It's a true rags-to-riches story," said Roberts.

"Yes it is," Griga replied.

Zsuzsanna had seen her brother's love for the glittery side of the American dream.

"Money was there for him to make other people happy and to play, to buy toys," she said.

"His wealth did afford him certain luxury items," Roberts noted.

"Oh he loved cars, yes, he loved cars," Griga said.

Frank Griga's yellow Lamborghini was legendary. It was that car that caught the eye of Adrian Doorbal. He'd been told about it by a woman who once dated Frank Griga.

"And Doorbal's face lights up and says, 'Who has the yellow Lambo?' And she says, 'Oh, don't you know? That's my friend Frank. He's my old boyfriend," Levine explained. "And he says, 'How would I know him?' 'Oh, he comes into this dance club Solid Gold all the time. Don't you know him?' Doorbal wasn't that stupid. Bingo. We got our next victim."

Doorbal and Lugo approached Frank Griga with a phony, made-up business scheme and a meeting was set at the Solid Gold strip club.

"And they told him that they were investors and that they had a way to make 20-percent return on the dollar," said Levine.

But the real plan mirrored the violent abduction of Marc Schiller: kidnap and torture Frank Griga until he signed over every nickel he had and revealed to the gang where his assets were kept.

"They also needed Krisztina," said Levine.

Asked why, she told Roberts, "They needed Krisztina because if Frank was missing, Krisztina was going to go to the police, 'cause why wouldn't she go to the police? Frank was completely legal."

 

 

Lugo and Doorbal, posing as businessmen, lured Frank and Krisztina back to Doorbal's apartment. Within minutes, Doorbal was strangling Frank in the bedroom.

"Doorbal, not knowing his own steroid strength, either broke his neck or suffocated him," said Levine.

And she screams, and Danny tackles her and injects her with horse tranquilizer, which they had basically bought to tranquilize the two of them," said Ferrer.

"And it killed her?" Roberts asked Levine.

"Not initially," she replied.

"They had a dead person and another one, another person near death," said Garafalo.

Krisztina Furton, 23, who loved animals, swimming and had dreams of being a professional diver, was now shot full of horse tranquilizer. Then, Lugo demanded she give up the access code numbers to Frank Griga's house.

"And Doorbal goes and speaks to her and he comes back and says, his exact words were, 'The bitch is cold.' They had injected her with enough horse tranquiller to kill four 1,000-pound horses. And now they're both dead -- Frank Griga and Krisztina Furton. And these two guys don't have a dime," Ferrer explained.

Asked what did they do with the bodies, Levine told Roberts, "Well, they got creative."

With the help of Jorge Delgado, Doorbal and Lugo stuffed the bodies of Frank Griga into a couch and Krisztina Furton into a large cardboard box.

"So here you have these two muscular guys, and on a Saturday morning, during the middle of the day, it looks like they're moving. And they're moving boxes and they're moving a couch. And what they contain are two bodies," said Jimenez.

They took the bodies to an empty warehouse. The horror was just beginning.

 

 

"So they went to Home Depot and bought a chain saw. They come back and they're gonna use this to dismember the bodies. But the chain saw doesn't have enough power. So these geniuses take this chainsaw back to Home Depot and return it," said Ferrer.

"You're kidding me," said Roberts.

"... and they brought that back and they end up buying an electric chainsaw," said Garafalo.

"It boggles the mind that they would return a chain saw that they were going to use to dismember these people," Roberts told the detectives.

"There's a lot of things about this case that boggle the mind," said Jimenez.

But the second chain saw jammed in Krisztina Furton's beautiful, thick hair. That's when Doorbal and Lugo reached for an ax.

"And they started chopping the body parts. For hours," said Levine.

"And they disposed of the torsos in one part of the county in oil drums," said Ferrer.

"And they left those hands, heads and feet in buckets at the 31 mile marker," Levine continued.

"... in the Everglades, on the Alligator Alley that goes from Ft. Lauderdale to Naples," said Ferrer.

"I have never passed that mile marker without saying a little prayer for Frank and Krisztina," said Levine.

Another gang member would dump Frank Griga's yellow Lamborghini on the side of the road, in the swampy Florida Everglades.

Police didn't need a GPS. The map was clear and it led straight to the Sun Gym gang.

"And I remember saying, 'We don't have a missing persons, we have a very major homicide,'" said Levine.

Soon, Frank's big sister was on a flight to Miami.

"The bodies were found that day," Zsuzsanna Griga told Roberts of the day she arrived. "Sergeant Jimenez and Sgt. Garafalo ... came and picked me up at the airport and they explained that they just had, you know, they had the bodies. Yes." Griga paused before continuing. "Sorry. It's still very hard after 17 years."

As investigators put the pieces together, Marc Schiller's kidnap story echoed like thunder.

"And they said, 'I think we got another case just like yours ... could you come down to Miami?' I said, 'Yeah, yeah. I'll come to Miami,'" said Schiller.

The Sun Gym gang left a massive, bloody trail of evidence. The last of the muscle heads would be busted when Danny Lugo's girlfriend, Sabina Petrescu, told police that Lugo was hiding out in the Bahamas.

The crimes and the trial would captivate and horrify all of south Florida.

"It was disturbing on every level. And I've tried serial killers," Ferrer said. "But this case really got to me."

Seeking Justice

In February 1998, almost three years after the gruesome murders of Frank Griga and Krisztina Furton, Danny Lugo and Adrian Doorbal were set to go on trial.

The case would be career defining for prosecutor Gail Levine.

"It was so encompassing ... from the day I got the call, from the day I started investigating it, from the day I met the victim's family, from the day I met everybody involved, from the relationship that I developed with police in investigating the case," she explained.

Lugo's girlfriend, Sabina Petrescu, was granted immunity in exchange for her testimony. She knew all the gang's secrets and details of their plots, though she believed they were undercover CIA agents.

"Sabina Petrescu's probably one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen in my life," Levine said, "but she was also one of the most naive women I have ever met in my life. She was in love with Danny Lugo and she thought he was her CIA agent."

 

 

With 100 witnesses and thousands of pieces of evidence, the case would drag on for 10 weeks, overseen by Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the State Attorney for Miami-Dade County.

"... when you have a case that's that grotesque and you know people suffered ... what do we do to bring justice to the victims of this case, either in their name or for their surviving members ," said Rundle.

Justice was what Marc Schiller got this time. He was in control as the prosecution's star witness.

"Walking in and seeing Lugo and Doorbal ... I realized that -- I was in the driver's seat ... because they never imagined that I'd be sitting there accusing them," said Schiller.

The prosecution rested. Lugo and Doorbal's attorneys chose not to put on a case.

"There's sometimes when, as a defense lawyer, you don't have anything to go on. You just don't. You can't claim misidentification. You can't claim anything," said Ferrer.

"What was the defense strategy?" Roberts asked Levine.

"Save their lives," she replied.

Jurors wasted little time making their decision. Within hours, they reached their verdict: Daniel Lugo was found guilty of first-degree murder in the deaths of Krisztina Furton and Frank Griga.

Doorbal was also found guilty and both men were sentenced to death.

 

 

It's a moment Judge Ferrer will never forget.

"As I was sentencing him, Danny Lugo was standin' there lookin' at me, and his eyes were ... watery. Noel [Adrian] Doorbal, on the other hand, he was joking. He was turning around to his girlfriend, and making faces like a goofball," said Ferrer.

"You believe the jury got it right?" Roberts asked Levine.

"One-hundred percent," she replied.

"Think my final words were, probably, 'May God have mercy on your soul,'" said Ferrer.

Asked is she's gotten justice, Zsuzsanna Griga told Roberts, "What sort of justice can be done, OK? Short of bringing him back?

... he was reaching for the skies, " Griga continued. "And the message that he -- he had out there was ... you can do whatever you want. And this is what these guys -- broke short.

"Were you satisfied with the verdict? Roberts asked Schiller.

"Well, guilty, yeah, but -- I don't believe in the -- death penalty," he replied. "I think being in a jail cell for the rest of their life is worse punishment."

The ordeal wasn't over for Marc Schiller. As he left the court after the trial, he was surrounded by armed FBI agents who arrested him on charges relating to an extensive Medicare scam.

The Medicare fraud that made Schiller such an easy target for the gang had come back to haunt him.

"It was a sham," Ed Du Bois said. "They never returned the money to Marc Schiller. Marc Schiller did not commit that $14 million worth of Medicare fraud."

In a highly unusual twist, Judge Alex Ferrer stood up for Schiller during the federal fraud investigation. He described how important Schiller's testimony was in bringing down the Sun Gym gang.

"He was treated like a prisoner of war or actually worse. The torture and the beatings and the -- the attempts to kill him and all of that. For some reason, it just felt to me that that should be taken into consideration," said Ferrer.

Incredibly, one of Schiller's torturers, Jorge Delgado - the Sun Gym member who had first told Lugo about Schiller and his millions - ended up helping the federal government make their case.

In a plea deal, Schiller ended up serving two years in federal prison and paying $137,000 in restitution.

"He felt betrayed," Roberts noted to Levine.

"His jail sentence is what he did, but the pain and suffering that he endured, that -- nobody deserves that," she said. "Did Marc Schiller deserve to go to prison? I leave that to the federal government. I wasn't involved in that at all."

Today, while Schiller refuses to talk about the charges, he does say he lost everything -- his health, his home, his millions. Even now, with a big Hollywood movie, he won't get a dime.

"It's a comedy, which is unfortunate, because there was nothing funny that happened to me," he said. "These were inept, incompetent people, but they were at the same time malicious and cold-blooded murderers."

Ultimately, the rest of the gang went to prison, too. The co-conspirator was sentenced to two years imprisonment for his involvement in Schiller's kidnapping and Jorge Delgado got 15. In all, seven members of the gang would do time.

It's been nearly two decades since the gang tortured and killed their way through Miami.

Gail Levine has continued her career at the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office. She's tried more than 00 cases.

Judge Alex Ferrer left the bench in 2005, and continues to enjoy success with his syndicated television show.

Marc Schiller has just released his tell-all tale, "Pain and Gain - The Untold True Story".

Lugo and Doorbal remain on death row.

Lugo and Doorbal continue to appeal their death penalty convictions.

Frank Griga's sister and their mother inherited his multi-million dollar estate.

  • Troy Roberts

    Correspondent, "48 Hours"

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