Prof arrested for blowing federal research money at strip clubs

  • The Pennsylvania professor who resigned after a university audit discovered he misspent federal research money has been arrested.
  • Former Drexel University Professor Chikaodinaka Nwankpa is alleged to have misspent more than $96,000 at strip clubs, according to the D.A.

A Pennsylvania professor has been arrested and charged after it was revealed that he allegedly misspent federal research money at strip clubs.

Former Drexel University professor Chikaodinaka Nwankpa, who resigned from his post in October after a university audit discovered he had spent $185,000 in federal research money at strip clubs was arrested and charged Monday with theft by unlawful taking and theft by deception, the U.S. District Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania said

"He betrayed Drexel University and tuition-paying students he was paid to educate..."   

[RELATED: Prof who spent federal research dollars on strippers, iTunes racked up over $111k in fraudulent charges]

“Mr. Nwankpa inappropriately and criminally diverted tens of thousands of dollars that were allocated for research purposes toward his own private enjoyment. He betrayed Drexel University and tuition-paying students he was paid to educate. 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," the D.A. said. 

As Campus Reform previously reported, Drexel University in October agreed to pay more than $189,000 in order to avoid any further liabilities. Nwankpa agreed to repay $53,328 and was also barred from working under federally-funded research projects for six months.

Drexel University received $70,921,000 in federal research funding in 2017, according to a Campus Reform analysis.

[RELATED: DOJ: Prof spent federal research funds at STRIP CLUBS]

In addition to allegedly spending more than $96,000 in federal taxpayer dollars at strip clubs and sports bars between 2010 and 2017, Nwankpa allegedly spent an additional $89,000 on iTunes, meals, and other personal expenditures that were not authorized. 

According to the D.A., Nwankpa paid for the expenses and then sought reimbursement by claiming "no receipt." Sixty-three percent of the charges he claimed for reimbursement were made between midnight and 2 a.m., the D.A.'s office said. 

After his arrest, Nwankpa posted $25,000 bail and surrendered his passport. His first court appearance is scheduled for January 29. 

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Jon Street | Managing Editor

Jon Street is a news editor for Campus Reform. Six years ago, Jon cut his reporting teeth fresh out of college as an intern at Media Research Center's, where he interviewed multiple members of Congress and former presidential candidates. From there, he went on to complete a stint at, where his exclusive, investigative work was picked up or cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox News, National Review, and the Drudge Report, among others. More recently, Jon spent three years as an assistant editor at In his free time, Jon enjoys trying new coffeehouses around the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and traveling back to his home state of Missouri to spend time with his family.

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