The office of the Philadelphia District Attorney has alleged that a former professor of Drexel University, Chikaodinaka Nwankpa, spent fund meant for research on adult entertainment venues.
Nwankpa, has been arrested and charged with theft for stealing $185,000 in research grant. The grant was supposed to cover research on approved studies though it is still unclear, which subjects the grant was for, state prosecutors said.
Meanwhile, a university audit discovered that Nwankpa, who had spent almost 30 years at the university, made many unapproved purchases between 2010 and 2017 which he tried to reimbursed through research grants. The district attorney’s office stated that he had spent over $96,000 on local strip clubs and sports bars, plus another $89,000 on food and iTunes purchases.
However, this is Nwankpa second time of been accused of fund misappropriation as regards to the gentlemen’s clubs. The Justice Department disclosed that the university had paid $189,062 to it to settle allegations of 10 years of improper spending against federal grants from the Department of the Navy, the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation, according to the Justice Department.
Nwankpa repaid Drexel University $53,328 and resigned from his position amid the investigation. He was barred from Federal Government contracting for six months. He has been working as an engineering consultant since June 2017, according to his LinkedIn accoun
“Nwankpa betrayed the university and its students. After a comprehensive investigation by our office’s Economic Crimes Unit, Mr. Nwankpa will have his day in court and will have to answer for his crimes,” Larry Krasner, the city’s district attorney said in a statement on Tuesday.
Cases or allegations of unethical or unlawful business conduct by university members are taken seriously by the school, the executive director of media relations for Drexel University, Niki Gianakaris, said in a statement to The Washington Post.
“The University initially reported this situation to the U.S. attorney’s office and has worked cooperatively with federal and state investigations into the matter,” she said.
Nwankpa was released from custody after making a payment on his $25,000 bail and agreeing to surrender his passport. It is unclear if he has secured legal representation and his preliminary hearing is scheduled for Jan. 29. If convicted on both charges, Nwankpa could face up to 14 years in prison and pay up to $30,000 in fines, the Washington Post said.