Miriam Rivera death: Star of controversial reality show There’s Something About Miriam dies, aged 38

Miriam Rivera, who came to fame as the transgender star of the controversial Sky One reality show There’s Something About Miriam, has died at the age of 38.

Speaking to the Daily Mail Australia, Rivera’s husband Daniel Cuervo revealed that she had died in Hermosillo, Mexico on 5 February this year, while suggesting that there may have been foul play involved.

“On the morning of February 5, Miriam called me [in New York] from Mexico, telling me she was feeling sick and vomiting blood, so I told her to get to the hospital,” Cuervo said. “She called me again before leaving the hospital at 12pm and that was the last time we spoke.”

Rivera was later found dead by hanging at her Mexico home, Cuervo said. He also claimed that he was informed an autopsy could not take place as a cremation had already been performed, while later he was contacted by an unknown male over the phone who told him, “Don’t come back to Mexico or we’ll kill you too.”

Jeanett Ørtoft, described as a close friend of Rivera’s, additionally told Daily Mail Australia that her death was suspicious. “Some say she was killed for going against human trafficking, others say that she took her own life,” she said.

There’s Something About Miriam, which was broadcast in 2004, saw six heterosexual British men competing for Rivera’s affections without the knowledge that she was a transwoman. Only at the end of the series were the contestants informed that Rivera was trans.

The series drew significant controversy at the time of its release, with all six men later suing Endemol, the production company behind the series, for conspiracy to commit sexual assault, defamation and personal injury due to “psychological and emotional damage”. The suit was eventually settled out of court.

Rivera would appear on Big Brother Australia in the aftermath of the series, before departing the public eye.