Male model held over partner's death

A male model who had recently been a contestant on a Portuguese reality television show was taken into police custody hours after his companion – a celebrity Portuguese television journalist – was found castrated and bludgeoned to death in a New York City hotel.

The journalist, Carlos Castro, 65, had arrived in the US in late December in the company of his young boyfriend, the model Renato Seabra, to see some Broadway shows and to spend New Year's Eve in Times Square, according to a family friend.

There had been some friction between the two men toward the end of the trip, but nothing to suggest that anything horrible was about to happen, said the friend, Luis Pires, the editor of the Portuguese language newspaper Luso-Americano.

The couple had been due to meet Mr Pires's daughter for dinner on Friday night but Mr Seabra suddenly emerged in the lobby of the InterContinental New York Times Square hotel acting strangely, Mr Pires said. "He told my daughter, 'Carlos will never leave the hotel again'," Mr Pires said, adding that his daughter became distraught and fetched a hotel manager. Security guards opened the door to the room and found the body at about 7pm.

Mr Seabra had left the hotel but was detained hours later after he sought care at a nearby hospital. He was not immediately charged.