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Home World News Washington Post World News Scotland rules US fugitive who faked death is not an Irish orphan

Scotland rules US fugitive who faked death is not an Irish orphan

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A Scottish judge ruled on Friday that a man arrested last year at a hospital in Glasgow – and who claimed to be an Irish orphan living in Scotland – is in fact a fugitive who faked his own death nearly three years ago to fake his death. flee criminal prosecution in the United States.

Nicholas Rossi, 35, will now face further extradition proceedings to determine whether he should be sent home to face rape charges in Utah, where he is wanted in connection with a 2008 sexual assault, according to the Utah Department of Public Safety .

“I am ultimately satisfied with the likelihood that Mr. Knight is indeed Nicholas Rossi, the person being extradited by the United States,” said the judge, Norman McFadyen, citing fingerprints, tattoos and photographic evidence. McFadyen called Rossi’s claims, including that he is an Irish-born orphan named Arthur Knight, “unbelievable” and “fantastic.”

He pretended to be dead to avoid assault charges, officials say. Police found him in a Scottish hospital.

Scottish authorities arrested Rossi, also known by an alias, Nicholas Alahverdian, in December 2021 after following him to the covid-19 ward of a Glasgow hospital. Employees there had recognized him and his tattoos from a message from Interpol, the Scottish Sun reported.

Over the past 11 months, Rossi, who attended court in a wheelchair, has suspended court proceedings, fired several lawyers, changed his accent and accused law enforcement officers of torture. He also alleged that authorities tried to frame him by giving him tattoos similar to those of the wanted man while he was in a coma, and by taking his fingerprints and sending them to Interpol.

Before Rossi fled to the UK, Rossi feigned his own death. In February 2020, just weeks after the FBI questioned him about a fraud case in Ohio, Rhode Island resident Rossi posted an obituary online stating that he was dying of cancer.

“His last words were ‘fear not and run to the bliss of the sun,'” the obituary said, adding that his hospital room was “filled with the sounds of the closing credits for composer Alan Silvestri’s 1997 film ‘Contact’. ”

Then known as Nicholas Alahverdian, a proponent of child welfare reform, he was honored to death by the Rhode Island legislature, and the mayor of Providence, the state capital, has released a statement lamenting the loss of a “beloved community leader”.

However, a year later, the Providence Journal reported that state police did not believe he was dead. Now he’s wanted in Rhode Island, accused of failing to register as a sex offender.

In Utah, authorities had retested the DNA of a 2008 assault kit, and the results showed it matched Rossi’s profile from a similar indictment at a community college in Ohio. The State Bureau of Investigations now says it has identified Rossi as a suspect in similar cases throughout Utah and elsewhere in the United States.

On Wednesday, court officials told Rossi that two more women came forward with allegations of sex crimes in Utah in 2008, according to the Scottish Sun.

In an interview with BBC Scotland, one of the women who accused Rossi of sexual assault said: “He’s trying to fool everyone, and I’m glad so many people are seeing through it.”





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