The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has fired a physics professor who was convicted of drug-smuggling charges by an Argentine court, The News & Observer reported.
The professor, Paul H. Frampton, was arrested in 2012 in Buenos Aires after the authorities found cocaine in the lining of a suitcase he was carrying.
He said he had traveled to Argentina to meet in person a woman he thought was a bikini model whom he had initially met online. He said that, while traveling, he was instead met by a man claiming to represent her. He said the man gave him what he thought was an empty suitcase to deliver to her. He has maintained his innocence and said he did not know about the drugs in the suitcase.
Mr. Frampton was convicted and sentenced to four years and eight months of confinement. He could be deported after serving half his sentence, and friends are expecting him to return to the United States soon.
Carol L. Folt, Chapel Hill’s chancellor, said in a letter this month to a Chapel Hill lawyer who represents Mr. Frampton that she was firing the professor for misconduct and neglect of duty, following the recommendation of a faculty committee. The newspaper could not reach Mr. Frampton or his lawyer for comment.