Jamal Nayfeh – Associate Dean for U. of Central Florida Faces Fraud and Theft Charges. White Collar Crime Knows No Boundaries.

One of the worst things that organizational executives face is the possibility of adverse publicity.  All manner of effort is placed on making effective decisions that produce positive results and publicity that promotes the organizations mission.  But, one thing that cannot be controlled is the choices that our employees make.  Needless to say, organizations must face the very real possibility that employees may make less than effective or ethical decisions.

In the case recently reported from the University of Central Florida – an associate dean  in the College of Engineering has been arrested ajamal-nayfehnd charged with grand theft.  Jamal Nayfeh is facing fraud and theft charges after he allegedly charged $40,000 worth of home electronics to a university-issued credit card and tried to conceal the purchases from the university, The Orlando Sentinel reported.

MOTIVATION:

As a white collar crime expert – speaker and fraud prevention consultant – the question always arises – what would motivate such behavior?  Nayfeh purportedly had the equipment installed in his $900,000 dollar home located in the gated and secluded community of Seminole Woods in Geneva.

There are three components of fraud:  (1) need; (2) opportunity and (3) rationalization.  I can’t speak to need or rationalization, yet, those two components are necessary parts of fraud.  Regarding “opportunity” – unfortunately the University of Central Florida created that with the all too easy issuance of a university issued credit card.  According to Fox News – UCF spokesperson Grant Heston says Nayfeh and other employees with the college credit cards had to sign an agreement promising to only purchase goods for the schools use.

PREVENTION:

Good people, people who you would never suspect, can be tempted and make choices that have very serious consequences.  A university spokesman, Grant Heston, said Mr. Nayfeh was suspended with pay this month after auditors discovered the purchases, made in December. The arrest affidavit says that Mr. Nayfeh gave the auditors an “altered receipt to make it appear that non-taggable business related items were purchased … rather than a home-entertainment system.”

But could such a purported fraud be prevented.  Yes.  While Mr. Nayfeh made the choices that would lead to his arrest, the University provided the opportunity.  This is very much like a similar situation with the Dallas Independent School District where the FBI has under investigation over 90 individuals who misused organizational credit cards.

Let me be clear  – I do not hold the University at fault nor do I hold the Dallas Independent School District responsibile for their employees fraudulent activities.  As a fraud prevention consultant, however, it is practical to observe how the fraud took place.  Had the opportunity not been in place there is a very real likelyhood that the fraud would not have occured.

COMMENTS:

According to a story on WFTV.com:

Nayfeh’s attorney had brokered a deal with UCF police to turn himself in at the Orange County jail as soon as an arrest warrant was produced. That warrant was issued Wednesday afternoon and Nayfeh turned himself in on charges of second-degree grant theft, fraud and credit card fraud greater than $100.

Among the $40,000 worth of items allegedly charged to Nayfeh’s UCF credit card were a home theatre system with an 80-inch screen, high-def projection system and surround sound, 52-inch LCD TVs in each bedroom and racks and racks of high-end audio equipment.

UCF spokesperson Grant Heston said Nayfeh made the purchases in December and had all of that equipment installed in his home. UCF auditors found the purchases after the high-dollar amount was red-flagged.”The individual has been suspended from the university. The legal process is running its course. And our intention now is to be reimbursed to the fullest extent possible,” Heston said.

Every choice has a consequence.  It is fair to be aware that though Mr. Nayfeh has been charged, he is innocent until proven guilty.

COMMENTS ARE WELCOME

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17 Responses to Jamal Nayfeh – Associate Dean for U. of Central Florida Faces Fraud and Theft Charges. White Collar Crime Knows No Boundaries.

  1. I just wanted to express my thanks to Nayfeh in this tough time about having him as a colleague. He did many things there that were very good with the fast prototyping lab and the robotic camp and many other things very precious to kids. These will not be forgotten.

    The latest is not comprehensible to most of us, the psychology of people’s mind is beyond comprehension in such situation. At first I thought he had a need to do teleconferencing from his home. If not, was not the way to go – Better to leave if one is so upset with the environment/people governing. Perhaps the Union’s madness and abuse got to him. or just weakness to the opportunity.

    Nayfeh is a good person who just lost it. The comment about opportunity is interesting to reflect upon.

  2. adam's bestie says:

    adam, if your reading this, please don’t leave. I am gonna miss you so much. i like you so much too. <3 always have always will. PLEASE DON’T GO!!! ily<33

    -Classmate<3

  3. fdsagfdgs says:

    He is now the Dean of Engineering in Saudi Arabia at Prince Mohammed Univ.

  4. eury says:

    he is he just gave a meeting he looks really motivated into enhancing labs and what not.

    im sure this was an attempt to jst screw around with him because he wanted to leave.

    and again yes he is in saudi arabia, he is currently the dean of engineering here at PMU. (Prince Mohammed University)

  5. Nayfeh's student says:

    I was one of his student many years ago, and I owe him alot. He has helped me tremendously from the academic, and personal presepective. Was shocked when I heared that. Regardless if it was a set up to damage him, or not. I strongly believe that he is a great man, with tremendous achievements.

  6. Jason says:

    This guy was a crook. He should have gone to prison.

  7. [...] Jamal Nayfeh – Associate Dean for U. of Central Florida Faces … Feb 2, 2009 … Motivational Speaker – Chuck Gallagher Business Ethics and Choices Expert … [...]

  8. bruce says:

    jannick, you nver knew him……

  9. nizar says:

    to the hill all of you who hates human beings achievements , jamal fares nayfeh was my classmate from 1969 up to 1978 and was my best friend i have ever known . His morals, honesty, credibility are not to be questioned here.

    • Adam says:

      Nizar, again, if not guilty, how did he plead to a felony charge ?! Talking about moral, ask about Nayfeh’s deals at PMU and the equipment and labs purchased only from NI for the electrical engineering……???

    • jimneighbors says:

      Oh, I question them. He is a felon. He achieved the theft of 40K and was fired pursuant to that.

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