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Utah court documents detail rape charge against Nicholas Alahverdian

Providence Journal - 1/14/2022

In December 2019, just weeks before Nicholas Alahverdian began spinning a lie to Rhode Island reporters of his impending death, a Utah investigator called an Ohio FBI agent regarding Alahverdian's whereabouts.

The FBI had a warrant for Alahverdian's arrest on charges he defrauded his foster father by taking out credit cards in his name and running up debts totaling more than $200,000.

Utah officials were looking for him for an alleged rape, court records show.

The FBI agent said he had actually recently spoken with Alahverdian, who had told the agent: "He was living in Ireland because there is a non-extradition treaty with the United States."

Learn more: Six things to know about Nicholas Alahverdian, the RI man who apparently faked his death

Two months later, in February 2020, several Rhode Island media outlets reported that Alahverdian had lost his battle with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. News of his supposed death was delivered by phone call and email by a woman claiming to be his wife.

A year ago: He was reported dead, but the state police kept looking for Nick Alahverdian

Last month, however, Alahverdian, 34, almost really did die - of COVID-19. And the illness that put him on a ventilator in a Scottish hospital also placed him on the radar again of law enforcement officials.

The Utah County Attorney's Office said Alahverdian was identified at the hospital "through photo evidence. The hospital was provided photos and confirmed that the person in the hospital matched the photos provided. As part of the extradition process, DNA and fingerprints were provided to Interpol as part of supporting evidence for extradition."

Nicholas Alahverdian: RI man suspected of faking his death, was found in Scotland. What we know

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On Thursday that county attorney's office released the investigative information it used supporting his arrest.

The document charges, in specific detail, how Alahverdian allegedly raped a 21-year-old woman he had been briefly dating in 2008 in Orem, Utah. (DNA recovered from the assault didn't come back to match his until 2018, the document said.)

The document is based on the work of a Utah law enforcement officer who reported that through his research, he had located police reports in four states regarding Alahverdian "involving criminal cases of sex assault, harassment, and possible kidnapping from 2007 through 2019."

The reports came from Rhode Island, Ohio, Utah and Massachusetts.

In each report, the officer, from the Utah Department of Public Safety, said, "there is a consistent pattern of behavior similar to the Orem (Utah) rape" of 2008.

The report refers to Alahverdian by the last name he used for much of his life, Rossi, until he reportedly changed it to his biological father's name.

According to the court document: On Sept. 14, 2008, the young woman reported to a local hospital that she had been sexually assaulted by her ex-boyfriend, Nicholas Rossi.

The woman said she met him three months earlier on MySpace and then about two weeks later in person. In recent weeks, she told police she ended the relationship because her boyfriend was getting "more rough" with her when having sex and because he owed her money.

On Sept. 13, 2008, the woman said Alahverdian invited her over to where he was living, telling her he would repay the money he owed her.

Instead, while they were talking, the court record says, Alahverdian unzipped his pants, exposed himself, pushed her onto the couch and proceeded to rape her. Afterwards Alahverdian "told her this was her fault because she is "mentally unstable and too emotional to deal with."

The woman said he blocked the door to prevent her from leaving, but shortly afterward received a text message and she ran out while he was distracted.

The investigator said Alahverdian exhibited similar behavior in the other instances he had uncovered.

He would "initiate some inappropriate contact leading the female to want to leave." Then he would either "threaten suicide or will force a non-consensual sexual encounter."

When confronted by police, Alahverdian would say "that the female is the aggressor."

Additionally, the investigator said he learned that Alahverdian had been married twice "and in each case his ex-wife filed for a protective order based on the physical and/or emotional abuse."

The Utah Attorney's Office reported earlier this week that Alahverdian was in custody and that the office was working with federal and international agencies to extradite Alahverdian back to Utah.

But it remained unclear as of Thursday when that might happen.

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