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Crime News

American Rape Suspect Who Allegedly Faked His Own Death and Was Found Living in UK Arrested There on Separate Rape Charge

The latest legal issues for fugitive Nicholas Rossi stem from an alleged 2017 rape in southeast England that was brought to authorities' attention in April of 2022. 

By Gina Salamone
Nicholas Rossi

An American man who was set to be extradited to the United States from Britain to face rape charges in Utah — who was also accused of faking his own death and taking on another identity — has now been arrested in England for separate rape allegations there.

The fugitive, Nicholas Rossi, 36, will now remain in custody in England for questioning for the time being, according to Essex Police, BBC News reports. 

RELATED: British Courts Rule Supposed 'Irish Orphan' Is American Fugitive Facing Rape Charges In Utah

The latest legal issues stem from an alleged 2017 encounter in Chelmsford in southeast England that was brought to authorities' attention in April of 2022. 

Why was Nicholas Rossi arrested in England?

In the British case, a 42-year-old woman whose Essex home Rossi moved into after meeting her on a dating app claims that he raped her, according to the New York Post. Rossi says that he has never even met her.

An extradition order for Rossi was signed by the Scottish government on September 28, the Associated Press reported. He's wanted in the U.S. for allegedly sexually assaulting a former girlfriend in 2008 in Orem, Utah.

Last fall, a judge in Scotland ruled that Rossi — who was allegedly pretending to be an Irish orphan named Arthur Knight who had never set foot in the U.S. — was in fact, Rossi. 

He had also allegedly faked his death to avoid the Utah rape charges.

RELATED: American Fugitive Who Faked Own Death Found In Scotland Hospitalized With COVID-19

Judge Norman McFadyen — after viewing fingerprints and tattoos in the identity case — said in Edinburgh Sheriff Court that “I am ultimately satisfied on the balance of probabilities... that Mr. Knight is indeed Nicholas Rossi, the person sought for extradition by the United States.”

Rossi, at the time, claimed authorities tattooed him while he was in a coma to match the marks of the fugitive wanted in the U.S., claims that McFadyen dismissed as “implausible” and “fanciful.”

Nicholas Rossi is allegedly an alias used by Nicholas Alahverdian

U.S. authorities have said that the name Rossi is also an alias used by the suspect, whose legal name is actually Nicholas Alahverdian.

He was arrested in December 2021 on the Utah rape charges at a hospital in Glasgow where he was receiving treatment for COVID-19.

Rossi has legal issues in other states as well. Rhode Island officials say he's wanted there for failing to register as a sex offender. And he was convicted of sex-related charges in 2008 in Ohio, where he's also facing fraud chargers, according to the AP. 

Rossi has said he was sexually abused and tortured while in foster care in Rhode Island, the AP reported. He had also claimed in 2020 that he suffered from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and had only weeks to live.

An online obituary stated that he died on February 29, 2020 at age 32, which was brought into question by his former foster family, an ex-lawyer and authorities in Rhode Island.