Professor faces criminal investigation
University Engineering Prof. Paul Allaire is currently facing a criminal investigation after police subpoenaed more than a decade’s worth of banking transactions leading them to suspect misuse of up to $1 million in University funds. Allaire is not currently facing arrest and no charges have been filed.
The Wade Professor of Engineering and Biomedical Engineering has served as director of the University’s Rotating Machinery and Controls Laboratory for more than 10 years. Police suspect he may have used his position and the equipment he had access to for personal benefit. Police subpoenaed Allaire’s bank statements in January during their investigation, noting they suspected possible financial discrepancies.
Police met with Senior Auditor Thomas Gorski of the University’s Internal Audit Department last November to discuss concerning findings in Dr. Allaire’s past financial activity. From the information gathered during those meetings, it was revealed that Allaire “openly and knowingly … used University equipment and software to complete the analysis and review he sold for personal gain,” according to a search warrant issued against him. Police noted emails that they said demonstrated Allaire’s intent to “divert business away” from the University laboratory to his own personal consulting company.
“Being the Director of the very entity that he was ‘undercutting,’ it is unreasonable to believe that Mr. Allaire was unaware of the wrong he was doing,” the warrant said.
The warrant estimated the amount of money Allaire has gained in the past decade to be between $700,000 and $1 million.
University spokesperson McGregor McCance said Allaire currently remains employed as a professor at the University, though as the investigation is ongoing, he could not comment on any future actions the University might take.
Allaire released a statement through his attorney, Jones and Green, LLP, Wednesday, saying he “vehemently denies recent reporting that he may have diverted money from the University.” Allaire is confident he has violated no laws or state or University regulations, according to the statement.
—compiled by Emily Hutt