- Associated Press - Friday, February 20, 2015

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A Twin Cities woman and her ex-husband have been indicted after authorities said they defrauded an insurance company of $2 million by faking the man’s death in their eastern European homeland.

Irina Vorotinov, 47, of Plymouth and Igor Vorotinov, 50, were charged in federal court with mail fraud and a related count. She’s also charged with money laundering.

Their 25-year-old son, Alkon Vorotinov, was earlier charged with covering up the scheme. He and his mother are free on bond. Prosecutors say Igor Vorotinov is living in Ukraine under a new identity, the Star Tribune reported (https://strib.mn/1zSUIEN ).

A criminal complaint says Igor Vorotinov bought a life insurance policy in 2010 and listed Irina Vorotinov and his son as beneficiaries. In 2011, a body was found in the bushes outside a Moldovan village, and items recovered from the body identified him as Igor Vorotinov, according to prosecutors.

Irina Vorotinov traveled to Moldova and identified the body as her former husband, according to court documents. It’s not clear where the body came from.

After having the body cremated in Odessa, Ukraine, Irina Vorotinov came back to the U.S. and made a death claim for Igor Vorotinov, prosecutors said.

A $2 million check was sent by the insurance company, and more than $1.5 million of it has been transferred by Irina Vorotinov and her son to accounts in Switzerland and Moldova, court documents say.

In June 2013, a Moldova tipster told an FBI special agent that Igor Vorotinov was living in Ukraine after he faked his death, according to authorities. His son was stopped by customs agents in Detroit after he returned from Moldova in November 2013, and prosecutors say photos with his dad were found on the son’s computer with timestamps showing he was still alive.

Matt Forsgen, Irina Vorotinov’s defense attorney, declined to comment, but said, “I have a lot of questions for the government.”


Information from: Star Tribune, https://www.startribune.com

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