Updated at 11:15 a.m. June 25, 2015
Two men convicted in a deadly stabbing attack on a woman in a Century City parking garage were sentenced Thursday to life in prison without the possibility of parole for their roles in the murder, which was masterminded by her estranged husband.
Gabriel Jay Marquez, 50, and Jose Luis Moya, 54, were convicted in February of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the July 28, 2008, death of Pamela Fayed.
A third man, 26-year-old Steven Vicente Simmons, was convicted along with Marquez and Moya, and sentenced in April to life in prison without parole.
Fayed’s husband was tried separately and sentenced to death.
“This is a most disturbing case because of its planning and sophistication — even though it was not carried out in a sophisticated manner,” Superior Court Judge Kathleen Kennedy said.
The judge said the murder — the victim was stabbed more than a dozen times as office workers were returning to their cars — “was horrible for all the witnesses who were touched by hearing her screams reverberating against all those buildings in Century City.”
Such attacks in public places “make everybody feel vulnerable” and can have an “immeasurable” and traumatic effect on witnesses, Kennedy said.
Speaking directly to Marquez and Moya, the judge said she didn’t know how they could have strayed “so far off the rails.”
“But you’ll have a lifetime to think about it and the rest of society will be protected from you,” Kennedy said.
The men declined to address the court and showed no reaction as the sentences were imposed.
Jurors found true the special circumstance allegation of murder while lying in wait against the three defendants, along with the special circumstance allegation of murder for financial gain against Moya, who had worked as a ranch hand for the woman’s estranged husband at his Ventura County ranch.
The judge said Moya’s participation was particularly hard to comprehend since he knew both the victim and her children.
“Somehow, this seemed like a good idea to you,” Kennedy said.
James Fayed was convicted in May 2011 of murder and conspiracy for masterminding the attack on the 44-year-old victim, who was stabbed 13 times as she approached her SUV in a parking garage at Watt Tower.
He was sentenced to death in November 2011 by Kennedy, who noted that Fayed was nearby as his wife was being “brutally and brazenly” murdered and would have heard the victim’s “blood-curdling screams.”
The Fayeds were in the midst of a bitter divorce, and the killing occurred just after the two met with their criminal attorneys as a result of a federal investigation into the couple’s gold-trading business.
—City News Service