MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - A Minnesota man was arrested earlier this month in Moldova and extradited to the United States after he allegedly faked his death as part of a scheme to collect a $2 million life insurance policy.
Igor Vorotinov, 54, was arrested in Moldova on Nov. 14 and extradited to the U.S. on Nov. 17. He made his first appearance in federal court on Monday on charges of mail fraud.
According to the U.S. District Attorney’s Office, in March 2010, Vorotinov took out a $2 million life insurance policy on himself, designating his wife as the primary beneficiary. In October 2011, his body was reportedly found in Moldova. His wife, Irina Vorotinov, traveled to Moldova and positively identified his body. The body was cremated and the urn was placed at the Lakewood Cemetery in Minneapolis.
Irina submitted the death claim to Mutual of Omaha for the $2 million policy and they sent a check for $2,048,414.09 to her home in Maple Grove.
Irina then recruited a third party to open a bank account at a local U.S. Bank branch and deposit the insurance check. She then asked the third party to transfer $1.5 million to another account in the name of her son, Alkon Vorotinov.
Between March 2012 and January 2015, more than $1.5 million of the life insurance proceeds were transferred to accounts located in Switzerland and Moldova.
On Nov. 27, 2013, Customs and Border Patrol agents stopped Alkon in Detroit as he was returning from a trip to Moldova. They seized his computer, which contained photos of Igor taken on April 19, 2013 and May 12, 2013 in which he is alive.
In March 2015, Alkon pleaded guilty to one count of misprision of a felony and was eventually sentenced to three years of probation and more than $2 million in restitution, to be paid jointly with his mother.
Irina pleaded guilty in May 2016 to one count of mail fraud and one count of engaging in a monetary transaction in criminally derived property. She was sentenced to 37 months in federal prison and is currently serving her sentence.