A man killed his mother at sea to inherit his family’s estate, says the United States


Federal prosecutors said Tuesday that a Vermont man lured his mother on a 2016 fishing trip off the coast of Rhode Island, killed her and sank a boat in a scheme to inherit his family’s estate.

An indictment was revealed in federal court in Burlington, Vato, on Tuesday accusing Nathan Karman, 28, of Vernon, of killing his mother, Linda Karman, while on boats in September 2016 and of providing false reports to authorities about what happened. It happened on the high seas.

Federal prosecutors do not specify how they think Mr. Karman killed his mother, but they say his boat, called the Chicken Pox, was deliberately sunk. Mr. Karman spent eight days at sea before the crew of the merchant ship, the Orient Lucky, found him floating on a lifeboat.

In 2013, as another part of his scheme, Mr. Karman grabbed his Sage Sauer rifle and shot and killed his grandfather, John Chucklos, who had become wealthy by building and renting nursing homes and other real estate projects, in Windsor, Connecticut. The indictment states. According to the indictment, Mr. Karman has not been charged with murder.

“As an essential part of this scheme, Nathan Karman killed John Chkalos and Linda Karman,” the indictment read. “He fabricated the cover stories to hide his involvement in those murders.”

The indictment did not say how much money Mr. Karman would have inherited. The Associated Press reported That, as the sole heir to his mother, he would have received $7 million.

One of the eight criminal charges Karman faces is accusing him of killing his mother, who had a “strained relationship” with her son, the Vermont District Attorney’s office said. The other seven are related to Mr. Karman’s attempts to obtain funds from Mr. Chkalos’ estate, which is worth tens of millions of dollars, or from insurance companies.

Mr. Karman was arrested on Tuesday and could not be reached for comment. The office of the Federal District Attorney for the Vermont District, which represents Mr. Karman, did not respond to a phone call seeking comment Tuesday. He is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.

William Michael, a lawyer for Ms. Karman’s three sisters, who sued Karman in 2018 to prevent him from inheriting the money and accused him of killing their father and sister, did not immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment on Tuesday. Their lawsuit is still pending, according to Associated Press.

Suspicions about Ms. Carman’s death first arose in September 2016 when the Coast Guard found Mr. Carman on an inflatable lifeboat without his mother. Her body was not recovered.

They had set out on a fishing trip just after 11pm on September 17, 2016, to spend time together on Mr Carman’s boat. The indictment stated that this was “Mrs. Karman’s principal way of dealing with her son”.

By that time, Mr. Chakalos had been dead for three years, and Mr. Carman had already received $550,000 as a result. The money was mostly spent by the fall of 2016 because he was out of work for extended periods, according to the indictment.

Federal prosecutors say Mr. Karman planned and prepared to kill his mother in several ways: He removed the cut tabs – the metal plates that help stabilize performance – from the boat and removed his computer from his home to prevent officials from reviewing him while he was away.

The indictment said he planned to report the chickenpox drowning and Ms Karman’s disappearance as “incidents”.

The indictment states that Ms Karman was “believed to be home by noon the following day, as indicated by the buoyancy plan she left with her friends”.

Mr. Karman said Associated Press In 2016 “what happened on the boat was a terrible tragedy that I’m still trying to address and I’m still trying to come to terms with.”

He added that he did not know “what to do about suspicious people”, and that he had “enough to deal with”.

The indictment also states that Mr. Karman attempted to defraud the company that insured his fishing boat.

The US Attorney’s office did not say why the investigation had been going on for years and did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on Tuesday.

In 2019, a federal judge in Rhode Island ruled that Mr. Karman contributed to the chickenpox drowning, according to Providence Magazine.

If convicted of premeditated murder, Mr. Karman will face life imprisonment.

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