Tragic death
Fans throw flowers at Whitney Houston's hearse during her 19 February funeral Reuters

Fans of Whitney Houston have reacted in horror to a National Enquirer front page showing her lying in her coffin.

The picture appears to have been taken during a private viewing for the singer's family at the Whigham Funeral Home in Newark, New Jersey on 19 February.

Houston is seen to be wearing a purple dress and is lying in a golden casket. Her family nickname, "Nippy", is embroidered on the inside of the lid.

The Enquirer's sub-headlines claim that Houston, who died after supposedly taking a cocktail of drugs and alcohol in a Beverly Hills Hilton hotel on 11 February, was buried in $500,000 of jewellery and gold slippers.

Celebrity blogger Perez Hilton branded the cover printing a "tasteless, insensitive and morbid thing to do".

Daytime talk show host Wendy Williams tweeted: "The photo of Whitney Houston in her casket to me was just plain wrong."

Evelyn Lozada, a reality TV star from VH1's Basketball Wives, said: "MADD at who ever sold Whitney houston's pic of her in her casket."