A New York medical examiner says a former president of the U.N. General Assembly awaiting trial in a bribery scandal died in a weightlifting accident.
Dr. Kunjlata Ashar, Westchester County's medical examiner, said Thursday that John Ashe died when a barbell he was lifting from a bench dropped on his neck. Ashe was declared dead Wednesday by a paramedic who responded to his Dobbs Ferry home.
Ashar said the cause of death - traumatic asphyxia - was determined during an autopsy.
Ashe, the former United Nations ambassador from Antigua and Barbuda, was arrested last fall and had pleaded not guilty to tax charges related to a bribery scandal. Prosecutors say a billionaire Chinese businessman and others had funneled over $1 million to Ashe while served as president of the General Assembly.