8 Mar 2017

George Michael died of natural causes - coroner

7:26 am on 8 March 2017

Singer George Michael died as a result of heart and liver disease, a British coroner has found.

George Michael died aged 53 on Christmas Day 2016.

George Michael died on Christmas Day 2016. Photo: AFP

The coroner said that there was no need for further inquiries into the death of the pop star who rose to fame in the 1980s with Wham! before going on to launch a successful solo career.

The singer died, aged 53, on Christmas Day at his home in Goring-on-Thames, Oxfordshire.

Thames Valley Police originally said his death was unexplained but not suspicious and an initial post-mortem examination was "inconclusive".

Darren Salter, senior coroner for Oxfordshire, said the singer was suffering from dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver. Because there was a "natural cause of death" there was no need for an inquest.

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a heart condition that impairs the pumping of blood around the body.

At the weekend, the singer's former partner Kenny Goss was quoted as saying: "I think his body just gave up. All these years, it was just weak."

He told The Sunday Mirror: "We just want closure, we want the funeral to happen, it's been a long time now."

Following the coroner's statement, Thames Valley Police said it had closed its investigation into Michael's death.

"As the cause of death was natural, no further action is proposed or required," it said.

Wham! were one of the most successful pop duos of the mid 1980s, with singles such as 'Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go', 'Last Christmas', 'Careless Whisper', and 'Young Guns (Go For It!)'.

- BBC / Reuters