UK: an American accused of rape betrayed by his tattoos

A man facing extradition to the United States on rape and sexual assault charges, but who claimed to be the victim of mistaken identity, was identified by British courts on Friday as the suspect sought, betrayed by his tattoos .

The 35-year-old man, who for months claimed to be Arthur Knight and an Irish-born orphan, is Nicholas Rossi, an American wanted in the United States in connection with an investigation into the rape of a wife in Utah and other sexual assaults, a court in Edinburgh settled.

“Mr. Knight is indeed Nicholas Rossi, the person wanted for extradition by the United States,” Judge Norman McFayden said in his ruling, highlighting the evidence presented during the case. He is suspected of faking his death in the US and fleeing to Scotland to avoid prosecution.

He claimed the tattoos were done without his knowledge

He had been arrested in October 2021 when he had Covid-19 and went to a hospital in Glasgow. Police and carers had identified him as Nicholas Rossi because his tattoos matched the description of the man on Interpol’s wanted list.

But since then he has formally denied being Nicholas Rossi, going so far as to claim the tattoos had been done to him without his knowledge while he was unconscious in hospital. He also said his fingerprints, taken at the hospital, had been swapped with those of Rossi to pass him off as the wanted man.

His explanations are “improbable and fanciful”, assessed during the proceedings, Judge Norman McFayden, adding that these repeated changes of identity are the behavior of “a person hiding from someone or something”.

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