TV star David Gest dies aged 62 in London hotel


American producer David Gest, the former husband of Liza Minnelli, has died in a London hotel aged 62.

The former Celebrity Big Brother star was married to Minnelli from 2002-2003, but they only officially divorced in 2007.

He was also known for being a close friend of the late Michael Jackson.

David Gest (Joel Ryan/AP

The TV personality gained a following in the United Kingdom recently when he appeared on Celebrity Big Brother.

Friend Imad Handi said: "It is with great sadness that I can confirm that David Gest has died today.

"David was truly larger than life. He was not just a huge talent and a dear friend but a showbiz icon.

David and Liza (SANG TAN/AP/Press Association Images)

"I know he will be missed by millions of fans around the world, and particularly in Britain, who came to love his charm and blistering one-liners.

"If I may steal the words of one eminent critic, David was a natural star and a genuine celebrity. I will miss him desperately."

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "Police were called at 10.17 on Tuesday 12 April to the Four Seasons hotel, in Westferry Circus, E14, to reports of an unexplained death of a man in his 60s. London Ambulance Service were called to the scene. Life was pronounced extinct at the hotel.

"A post-mortem will be held in due course. Next of kin are in the process of being informed."