[Fox News] American fugitive who faked his own death faces extradition from UK: judge

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An American fugitive faked his own death in 2020 and moved to Scotland to avoid a 2008 rape charge, according to global authorities.

Now, a U.K. judge has decided that the “manipulative” 35-year-old fugitive, who calls himself Arthur Knight but goes by aliases that include Nicholas Alahverdian and Nicholas Rossi, may be extradited to the United States to face his alleged crimes.

“I conclude that he is as dishonest and deceitful as he is evasive and manipulative,” Edinburgh Sheriff Court Judge Norman McFadyen said Wednesday. “These unfortunate facets of his character have undoubtedly complicated and extended what is ultimately a straightforward case.”

Alahverdian is suspected of raping a former girlfriend in Orem, Utah, in 2008, according to a press release from Utah County Attorney David Leavitt.

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U.K. authorities initially arrested Alahverdian in December 2021 while he was being treated for COVID-19 in a Glasgow hospital. Utah investigators tied Alahverdian to the 2008 rape through photographs, DNA and fingerprints that they provided to Interpol, authorities said. His tattoos also helped police confirm his identity.

Alahverdian said authorities framed him by tattooing him and collecting his fingerprints while he was in a coma at the hospital.

Scottish authorities arrested Alahverdian again in July 2022 for allegedly obstructing the course of justice while acting out at Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital on July 5.

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Hospital officials alleged that Alahverdian “shouted, swore, lunged and pursued them,” according to a July 2022 press release from Leavitt’s office, citing reports from the Glasgow Court Press Agency.

Alahverdian reportedly pushed back against prosecutors’ allegations that he goes by 10 different aliases and speaks in both Irish and English. He also allegedly faked seizures at the Glasgow hospital, according to Leavitt’s office.

“Extensive inquiries established that he traveled to Dublin from the USA in 2017 but there was no record of him entering the UK. He was involved in a relationship with a UK national,” U.K. Prosecutor Julie Clark said in a July 2022 statement, according to Leavitt’s office and the Glasgow Court Press Agency. “He then found another relationship and married in February 2020 using the name Nicholas Brown which is on the marriage certificate. It is not known how he made it to Scotland but he was in the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital being treated for Covid.”

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Alahverdian is wanted for other crimes in Rhode Island, where he allegedly failed to register as a sex offender, and Ohio, where he faces fraud charges.

The suspect grew up in Rhode Island and testified before state lawmakers that he was the victim of torture and sexual abuse while in the Department of Children, Youth and Families foster care system.

Three years ago, Alahverdian told local Rhode Island media that he had late-stage non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He apparently faked his own death in February 2020 when his fraudulent obituary was published online.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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