Artur Samarin: Ukrainian man who posed as US high school student for four years 'has no regrets' about deception

Man has been arrested after posing as a teenager in Pennsylvania for four years

Caroline Mortimer
Tuesday 01 March 2016 19:51 GMT
(Harrisburg Bureau of Police)

A 23-year-old Ukrainian man who posed as a high school student has said he has no regrets about the deception - despite faces a sexual assault charge for allegedly sleeping with a 15-year-old girl.

Artur Samarin was arrested last week in Pennslyvania after it emerged he had been pretending to be an 18-year-old schoolboy called Asher Potts for four years.

He was initially charged with several felony crimes including identity theft and tampering with public records but has since been accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl when he was 22.

But in an interview with local news channel WHTM - carried out before the sex assault charge was filed - he said the ruse was not his idea but that he had “no regrets”.

He said: “I’m not regretting doing it, I have spent all of my free time in education.

“It was not my idea, I just want to let you know it was not my idea.”

He reportedly arrived in the US in 2012 after graduating high school and spending two years in college in Ukraine.

He said: “Ukrainian people were starving, [including] my family. My mother, my grandfather, and my grandma, they put their last money for me to come here and they told me: ‘We wish you well. Do your best, man. Do it for all of us’”.

But his adoptive grandmother, Carolyn Potts, who lives in Arizona said she had harboured doubts about the situation.

She said Samarin was perfectly nice and charming but that she “always felt a little bit suspicious”.

In an interview with PennLive, she said: “Somehow or the other, I’m not totally astonished.

“There was something about the whole situation. I couldn’t put my finger on it from day one.”

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