Young gay man beaten to death by frenzied mob as friends watched helplessly on

Samuel Luiz poses for the camera in a group of bystanders

Young gay man Samuel Luiz was brutally beaten to death by a dozen men at A Coruña, Spain, in a suspected homophobic killing that has been condemned by government officials.

Luiz, a 24-year-old nursing assistant described by pals as a loving man who always wanted to make people laugh, was slain outside a nightclub in the bustling port town that acts as the main financial hub of the Galicia municipality.

As the last words he heard alive were his attackers barking “disgusting f****t” at him, Luiz was pummelled by a group of men who reportedly mistook his video call for him recording them, his friends told El Mundo, a daily newspaper.

As Samuel Luiz was beaten, his friend watched on: ‘I just listened to the blows’

At around 3am on Saturday (3 July) during Pride weekend, Luiz and his friend Lina stood outside a local nightclub and began FaceTiming a friend. A man then approached him and said: “Stop filming you I’ll kill you, f****t.”

But before Luiz could even reply, the man set upon him. Luiz’s friend Vanesa over the video call watched helplessly as the man beat him: “The man punched him very hard and Luiz began to scream,” she recalled.

“I just listened to the blows and Lina shouted: ‘Leave him, he’s my friend, please leave him!'”

She said that civilians stepped in to help Luiz during the brawl, managing to push his attackers away. Vanesa rang up Lina to tell her that Luiz had been attacked, causing her to have an “anxiety attack” as she rushed outside to find the victim bleeding.

Then the man returned. As Lina looked for Luiz’s mobile phone which he had dropped during the beating, the now 12-strong group fatally injured him.

“I saw in the distance that a crowd of people were moving at high speed,” Lina said. “When I arrived I found Samuel unconscious on the ground. [The attackers] were no longer there and had left him lying there.”

Emergency services struggled to save Luiz for two hours, dying later that early morning of his injuries at La Coruna University Hospital Complex.

City police have since launched an investigation into the incident, combing through local surveillance camera footage and questioning both witnesses and nightclub-goers. At least 13 suspects have been arrested, the force added.

“We are at the early stages, only the investigation will tell us whether it was a homophobic crime or not,” government delegate Jose Minones told local reporters, according to Deutsche Welle.

Equalities minister Irene Montero condemned the attack in a tweet as she paid tribute to Luiz.

“We must build among all of us a freer society,” she said, “in which we do not leave room for hatred.”