College professor allegedly stole $185,000 in funds spent on grownup leisure venues, sports activities bars


He was the previous chair of Drexel College’s engineering division

A professor from Drexel College was arrested for stealing $185,000 in grant analysis funds that he used for grownup leisure, sports activities bars and different unauthorized purchases, prosecutors introduced.

Chikaodinaka Nwankpa, 57, is going through fees of theft by illegal taking and theft by deception, in response to a press launch from Philadelphia District Lawyer Larry Krasner.

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Nwankpa, the previous chair of Drexel College’s engineering division, allegedly “spent funds that have been allotted for analysis on actions that weren’t associated to tutorial analysis, together with on visits to space grownup leisure venues and sports activities bars, meals, and iTunes purchases,” officers mentioned.

“Mr. Nwankpa inappropriately and criminally diverted tens of hundreds of that have been allotted for analysis functions towards his personal personal enjoyment. He betrayed Drexel College and tuition-paying college students he was paid to coach,” Krasner mentioned. “After a complete investigation by our workplace’s Financial Crimes Unit, Mr. Nwankpa could have his day in court docket and should reply for his crimes. I’d wish to thank Drexel College and the Drexel College Police Division for his or her work all through this investigation.”

Between 2010 and 2017, an audit by the college discovered that Nwwankpa had a number of unauthorized and “no receipt” purchases and sought reimbursement by analysis grant funds, officers mentioned.

“He made greater than $96,000 in purchases at grownup leisure venues and sports activities bars, and greater than $89,000 on purchases towards iTunes, meals, and different unauthorized purchases,” in response to the DA’s press launch.

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The district lawyer’s workplace additionally mentioned that he tried to “conceal grownup leisure bills by claiming that the objects have been for catering and meals, although 48% of the 114 separate fees he made have been performed on weekends, and 63% have been processed between the hours of midnight and a pair of:00 a.m.”

Drexel College paid a $190,000 settlement after a separate federal investigation, in response to a information launch from the Department of Justice.

A federal investigation started in 2017 after the college voluntarily disclosed improper fees to eight federal grants for power and naval expertise associated analysis that it obtained from the Division of the Navy, the Division of Power and the Nationwide Science Basis, the Division of Justice mentioned.

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On the time the incident first got here to mild in October, a college spokesperson mentioned that Drexel instantly reported Nwankpa’s misconduct to authorities and cooperated with the investigation.

“Drexel takes allegations of unethical or illegal enterprise conduct on the a part of any members of the college group very critically and stays dedicated to being in full compliance with all billing rules and necessities,” the college mentioned in an announcement, after the announcement of the varsity’s settlement with the federal authorities in October.

Nwankpa repaid $53,328 to Drexel and resigned his place in October, the DOJ mentioned.

College police arrested Nwankpa on Monday, however he was launched after posting $25,000 bail and surrendering his passport.

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There shall be a preliminary listening to for his case on Jan. 29 on the Juanita Kidd Stout Heart for Prison Justice in Philadelphia.