Miriam Rivera entered the Big Brother house in 2004. In February this year, she was found dead.

Reality TV star and model Miriam Rivera has died at the age of 38, and her cause of death is shrouded in mystery.

The Mail Online reports she died in Mexico back in February.

Rivera rose to fame in 2004 on the British dating show There’s Something About Miriam, that saw six men battle it out for her heart.

A 21-year-old Miriam on There's Something About Miriam in 2004. Image: Sky1

At the end of the series the 21-year-old revealed she was transgender and the winning contestant was put on the spot and asked to decide if he would go on vacation with her and collect the $18,000 prize money, or forfeit the money and holiday and walk away.

This abhorrent premise for a show was aired on Channel Ten back in the day, and the show was sued by the competing men including the winner.

Rivera then made a guest appearance on season four of Big Brother Australia.

Here's Miriam on Big Brother. Post continues after video.

Video by Big Brother

She entered the house as "Maria" and then later revealed to the housemates she wasn't born a woman.

Rivera was the world's first visible trans star, but the way her gender and sexuality was used on TV was labelled as cruel and exploitative.

Rivera's husband reportedly suspects foul play was involved in her death, because her body was cremated before an autopsy could be performed.

He told Mail Online through a Spanish interpreter he thinks something went wrong when she refused to work as a prostitute, and her death was then "passed off" as a suicide.

Miriam Rivera.
Miriam died in February aged 38. Image: Facebook/Miriam Rivera.

"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,"  he told the publication.


"She called me again before leaving the hospital at 12pm and that was the last time we spoke."

At 2pm Rivera's body was found in her home in Hermosillo, Mexico.

Miriam's friend Jeanett Ørtoft also thinks her death is suspicious telling the Mail Online, "Some say she was killed for going against human traffickers, others say she took her own life".

Jeanett shared a Facebook tribute calling Rivera the "shiniest star".

"The news about you being taken away from this world far too early and in this way broke my heart and left me in shock and tears," the post on February 25 read.

"You made a huge difference for me and so many other people around this planet, that you made significantly more colourful. Your life was too short, but you sure made it remarkable."

When Rivera was in Australia she spoke of the dangers of living in Mexico as a transgender woman.

"You have to be really strong, I went through a lot. You have no idea what I went through, it's not even funny. But I'm a strong woman!" she told Big Brother host Gretel Killeen before entering the house.

Rivera made headlines again in 2010 when the Daily Mirror reported she was working as a $500-an-hour escort in London.

"I do absolutely everything – I do a full service [full sex]. Once you have paid for me, you can do whatever you want," she told them.

"I have no regrets – I'm having fun. I started doing this for the money and when everything is sorted I will stop."

She claims she turned to prostitution to pay for hospital bills she racked up in 2007 after falling out of a fourth storey window trying to escape a burglar.

But her friend Jeanett tells a different side to that story.

She told Daily Mail Australia it was attempted murder.

"Some masked men threw [Miriam] out from the fifth floor [of her New York apartment] and she broke almost every bone in her body," she said.

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