Orenthal James Simpson, the former American football star turned actor, has passed away aged 76.

He was diagnosed with prostate cancer in May 2023, and Simpson had been receiving chemotherapy treatment, the Pro Football Hall of Fame said in a statement.

According to his family, he died "surrounded by his children and grandchildren".

San Francisco-born Orenthal James Simpson rose to fame in college before playing in the NFL.

In 1995, he was acquitted of the murder of his former wife Nicole Brown and her friend in a trial that gripped America.

In 2008, he was sentenced to 33 years imprisonment on unrelated charges of armed robbery and was released in 2017.

Before his legal problems, Simpson was well-liked, known as an athlete, actor, and the face of several major companies.

He was a college football star at the University of Southern California before signing with the Buffalo Bills in 1969, where he played until 1977.

He became one of the greatest ball carriers in NFL history.

In 1973, he was the first NFL player to "rush" - running to advance the ball for his team - more than 2,000 yards in a season.

He retired in 1979 to concentrate on a career in film and television.

His credits include roles in the Towering Inferno, Capricorn One, and the Naked Gun series.

Orenthal James Simpson children

He fathered three children with Marguerite L. Whitley, Arnelle L. Simpson, Jason Lamar Simpson, and Aaren Lashone Simpson. Tragically, Aaren drowned in the family's swimming pool in August 1979.

He also fathered two children Sydney Brooke Simpson and Justin Ryan Simpson with Nicole Brown.

Caitlyn Jenner, an athlete turned TV reality star once part of Simpson's social circle, echoed Fred Goldman, posting two words on Twitter/X: "Good riddance." 

Stars who knew him have shared their condolences to the family.