10:16 AM EST, December 13, 2012
We're now learning about a shocking murder plot to kill teen idol Justin Bieber.
Three men have been charged with a grisly plot to strangle Bieber and his bodyguard during the singer's sold-out appearance at Madison Square Garden in New York City two weeks ago.
The alleged mastermind, Dana Martin, has killed before. He's serving two life sentences for murdering a 15-year-old girl from Vermont.
Cops say he recruited an ex-con, Mark Staake, a recently released inmate and Staake's nephew, Tanner Ruane, to carry out his twisted murder plan to kill Bieber.
Police say the plot was to strangle Justin Bieber with a paisley necktie. Why a paisley tie? It was the sick calling card used to kill that girl in Vermont in 2000.
Why was Bieber targeted? In a just-released police affidavit, Dana Martin allegedly admitted he had become infatuated with the pop star, even tattooing an image of Bieber on his leg.
But cops say worship turned to hate when Martin wrote to the teen idol three times from prison in New Mexico. His letters were never returned in kind and that made him upset.
Rhonda Saunders is a Los Angeles prosecutor of celebrity stalking cases involving Madonna and Halle Berry.
Saunders told INSIDE EDITION, "It wasn't 'shoot him' or 'blow him up with a bomb.' It was, 'I want him strangled.' That's a personal message."
Police say Martin admitted he was tired of being a "nobody" and recruited the two alleged henchmen to carry out Bieber's murder. But Martin told cops he got cold feet and blew the whistle on his cohorts, cops say. When Staake and Ruane were arrested and their car searched, police found a pair of large pruning shears which they allegedly intended to use to castrate Bieber.
Saunders said, "I can't imagine how Justin Bieber is handling this. This is so frightening, and unfortunately, it happens. It happens to celebrities."
Justin Bieber's manager says in a statement: "We take every precaution to protect and insure the safety of Justin and his fans."