Former head of the United Nations General Assembly John Ashe was found dead at his home in the Westchester village of Dobbs Ferry on Wednesday. His death is strangely convenient in light of the fact that he was facing charges in a federal bribery case that would have tied him to Chinese Clinton donor Ng Lap Seng.
First the story from the New York Post:
John Ashe, 61, who was president of the General Assembly from 2013 to 2014, died at his home in the Westchester village of Dobbs Ferry Wednesday afternoon from "traumatic asphyxia with laryngeal cartilage fractures while lifting barbell on bench," the county's Medical Examiner's Office said in a statement.
The death was ruled an accident.
The current General Assembly president, Mogens Lykketoft, had said earlier that Ashe died of a heart attack.
Ashe's lawyer said that his client had been suffering from an undiagnosed medical condition and that his family had discovered him "passed out twice in the last few months."
Interestingly enough, Richard Johnson points out, "Ashe was due in court Monday with his Chinese businessman co-defendant Ng Lap Seng, who is charged with smuggling $4.5 million into the US since 2013 and lying that it was to buy art and casino chips."
Who is Seng? According to a 1998 Senate report, he illegally funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars through Charlie Trie, an Arkansas restaurant owner, to the Democratic National Committee during the Clinton administration. However, he was never charged with a crime.
Johnson believes that many will see similarities in the death of Vince Foster and John Ashe and sees his death as "conveniently timed." He wrote:
The death by barbell of disgraced UN official John Ashe could become a bigger obsession for conspiracy theorists than Vince Foster's 1993 suicide.
One source told me, "During the trial, the prosecutors would have linked Ashe to the Clinton bagman Ng. It would have been very embarrassing. His death was conveniently timed."
Ashe's lawyer Jeremy Schneider told me he is sure Ashe's death was an accident. "There is not one iota of evidence that it was homicide. This is nothing at all like Vince Foster."
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