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An actor portraying the apostle Judas in a play about the final moments of Jesus Christ’s life has died after accidentally hanging himself onstage in Brazil.
Actor Tiago Klimeck, 27, was re-enacting the scene of the real-life Judas in which the apostle commits suicide after betraying Jesus to the Romans for 30 pieces of silver.
Klimeck was reportedly dangling for four minutes before fellow actors realized there something was wrong. He was already unconscious by the time he was taken down from the apparatus.
The Passion play was being performed on Good Friday, April 6, in Itarare, Brazil, some 200 miles west of Sao Paulo.
Klimeck was rushed to Santa Casa de Itapeva Hospital where he remained in a coma on life support before the machine was switched off Sunday. Medical scans revealed he suffered from cerebral anoxia due to the lack of oxygen going to his brain. The hospital says an autopsy will take place.
News reports suggest the safety vest the actor was wearing under his robe rode up around his neck, strangling him.
Investigators think the rope attached to the apparatus from which Klimeck was hanging may have been improperly secured. Police are not sure if any charges will be filed.
Judas Iscariot was one of the 12 original apostles of Jesus who, according to New Testament, was “entered” by Satan the devil during the famous Last Supper, the final Passover meal Jesus ate with His disciples. (Luke 22:3)
After betraying Jesus by identifying the Messiah to Roman soldiers by kissing Him, Judas tried returning the money he was paid, saying, “I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.” (Matthew 27:4)
The Pharisees then bought a field with the money Judas threw back at them. (Matthew 27:7)
Judas hanged himself in that field, and his dead body eventually fell onto the ground, bursting open “and all his intestines spilled out.” (Acts 1:18)