Nigerian professor, Dr. Chikaodinaka D. Nwankpa has been accused of lavishing $189,062 research grants on strip clubs, and other improper purchases.
The fraud perpetrated by Nwankpa, as a professor of Engineering at Drexel University, Philadelphia was uncovered after the university's internal audit in 2017.
Drexel discovered that between July 2007 and April 2017, Nwankpa submitted improper charges against the grant issued by the Navy, the Department of Energy, and the National Science Foundation.
The 56-year-old was said to have used the fund for items such as personal iTunes purchases and for “goods and services” provided by Cheerleaders, Club Risque, and Tacony Club.
Upon being confronted, Nwankpa admitted the unauthorized expenses, resigned his post in lieu of termination, repaid $53,328 to Drexel, and was debarred from federal government contracting for a period of six months.
Having discovered the fraud, Drexel disclosed Nwankpa’s conduct to the government and cooperated with the investigation to identify the full scope of the misconduct.
The United States Attorney, William M. Mcswain, however, said the University has agreed to a $190,000 settlement to fend off a potential lawsuit.
"This is an example of flagrant and audacious fraud, and a shameful misuse of public funds," said McSwain, whose office negotiated the agreement with Drexel after an investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the inspectors general of the U.S. Energy Department and the National Science Foundation.
The Nigerian professor spent 27 years teaching in Drexel’s electrical and computer engineering department, chairing it from 2015 until he left.