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John Ashe, ex-UN official facing bribery charges, dies at 61

John Ashe, former UN General Assembly president, has

John Ashe, former UN General Assembly president, has died. Pictured: Ashe at a summer concert at the United Nations on June 6, 2014, in New York City. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Mike Coppola

Former United Nations General Assembly president John Ashe, facing bribery charges in federal court in Manhattan, died Wednesday after dropping a barbell on his neck at his Dobbs Ferry home, the Westchester County medical examiner has ruled.

A spokesperson for Medical Examiner Ashar Kunjlata said the death, which occurred while Ashe was performing a bench press, has been ruled accidental.

Ashe, 61, a diplomat from Antigua, headed the General Assembly in 2013 and 2014. He was charged last year with receiving $500,000 in bribes from billionaire Macau developer Ng Lap Seng to support development of a UN conference center in Macau.

He had pleaded not guilty. Seng is still awaiting trial on the charge.

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