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Attorneys defending three men accused of conspiring to cover-up the 2006 murder of attorney Robert Wone say police have been prejudiced against their clients from the start.

Suspects Joe Price, Dylan Ward, and Victor Zaborsky, are charged with conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and tampering with evidence in connection to Wone’s killing.

“These three men are victims, as well,” defense David Schertler asserted during opening arguments on Monday.  “[Police] decided they were guilty within hours of the murder.”

Schertler says investigators found no evidence that Wone’s blood had been cleaned up and also failed to follow up on four latent fingerprints found at the scene that don’t match Wone’s or any of the suspects.

Schertler says investigators had a hard time understanding why Wone, a straight man, would choose to spend time at a house full of gay men. He says police had accused the suspects of trying to “gay him up.”

Schertler and other attorneys produced photographs from Wone’s 30th birthday party which they say had been organized by the suspects. They argued the men had no reason to hurt their good friend.