Alleged US fugitive has tattoos photographed to establish identityon October 6, 2022 at 3:19 pm

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The 35-year-old denies he is Nicholas Rossi who is accused of raping a woman in Utah in 2008.

The man who denies being US fugitive Nicholas Rossi arrives at Edinburgh Sheriff CourtImage source, PA Media

An alleged fugitive facing extradition from Scotland to the US has had photos of his tattoos taken in prison as part of a bid to establish his identity.

US prosecutors believe he is Nicholas Rossi, who is said to have faked his own death to escape charges there.

However, the 35-year-old claims to be Arthur Knight, a victim of mistaken identity who has never been to the US.

He is accused of raping a 21-year-old in Utah in 2008 and attacking other women in the States.

At an Edinburgh Sheriff Court hearing on Thursday, the man’s lawyer David Kinloch said work was under way to prove the identity of his client, who is being held at Edinburgh’s Saughton prison.

He told the court: “The Crown have provided various photographs of a person they believe is Nicholas Rossi, including tattoos being exhibited. It was suggested that my client should be examined and photographed.

“That has been done on an evening visit to Saughton. I personally attended last Thursday, a week ago today, and counsel is in possession of those photos.”

At a previous hearing last month Sheriff Kenneth Maciver said it should not be “rocket science” to prove identity.

The man, appearing by video-link from HMP Edinburgh in a wheelchair and wearing an oxygen mask, denies being the alleged fugitive.

When asked whether he was Nicholas Rossi, he replied: “No, I am Arthur Knight.”

Mr Kinloch asked for the proceedings to be continued for another week as his client’s senior legal counsel was not available.

Sheriff Kenneth Campbell KC, who was overseeing this week’s hearing, agreed to set a further appearance date of 13 October.

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