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Criminal Charges Filed in UNC Academic Scandal

The Charlotte News and Observer’s Dan Kane:

An Orange County grand jury Monday morning accused former UNC-Chapel Hill African studies chairman Julius Nyang’oro of a felony for accepting $12,000 from the university for a summer class that he did not teach.

Nyang’oro, 59, of Durham was indicted on a charge of obtaining property by false pretenses, Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall said. The charge is a lower-level felony and Nyang’oro is not likely to face prison time if convicted.

The charges stem from an investigation by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation. The SBI investigation is still going, focusing on a second individual who may also be involved with the no-show courses.

With the NCAA investigation seemingly over at this point, the SBI investigation and criminal case against Nyang’oro may be one of the last obstacles UNC has to avoid before putting this issue to bed, at least on the NCAA violation front. While the investigation and criminal charges are not focused on the reason for the academic misconduct, that information could still be developed as part of the investigation, or raised by Nyang’oro or the second individual in a potential criminal trial or plea.

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