A MAN from Yorkshire accused of stealing the identity of a dead American is being held in the United States under house arrest.
John Skelton, 41, was arrested on Monday after flying in to Baltimore-Washington airport, US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said.
He was held after allegedly using a fraudulent US passport to re-enter the country after a trip to the UK and was later released to "home confinement". Federal prosecutors said he was freed under strict conditions which included electronic monitoring.
He is accused of aggravated identity theft, making a false statement in an application and use of a US passport, and social security number fraud.
He allegedly stole the identity of US citizen Kurt Branham, who died in 1994 aged 28, spokesman Steve Sapp said.
It was reported by US newspapers that Mr Branham was a legislative aide to US Senator Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky.
An obituary published in the Washington Post said Mr Branham worked on legislation which included laws dealing with missing and abused children, the Baltimore Sun said.
According to investigators, Skelton said he had the passport issued to him in 2005 because he became involved in a relationship and wanted to stay in the US.
He allegedly chose the name from a list of suggested identities given to him by a friend. Branham was the most English-sounding name of the group, so he chose it, investigators said.
Skelton apparently now wants to return to Britain and was making preparations for his return during his last trip.
His federal public defender, Joseph Evans, said Skelton did not steal the identity for financial gain and was otherwise law-abiding.