Former Professor Pleads Guilty to Defrauding U. of Kentucky

Dongping (Daniel) Tao, a former engineering professor at the University of Kentucky, pleaded guilty on Thursday in federal court to one felony count of wire fraud in connection with allegations that he defrauded the institution out of more than $62,000. He resigned before being confronted with the allegations.

As part of a plea agreement, he agreed to repay $62,000 to the university and a private company he worked for.

“Dr. Tao has accepted responsibility for his mistake and he intends to pay the money back,” attorney Kent Westberry said after Tao’s hearing Thursday. “He has and will continue to be a productive citizen. He just wants to get on with his life.”

Tao answered yes and no to the judge’s questions but made no further comment.

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