A psychologist at the University of Buffalo, William Fals-Stewart, PhD, was accused of scientific misconduct for making up data in a study that received federal funds. He overstated the number of volunteers who participated.
During the university’s formal investigation, three witnesses testified by phone on his behalf.
Fals-Stewart said they were all out of town and couldn’t testify in person. He was exonerated.
Then he sued the university, seeking $4 million from the state in damages.
While preparing a defense, the Attorney General discovered that the three witnesses were professional actors hired by Fals-Stewart. They were given scripts, told they were taking part in a mock trial training exercise, and duped into impersonated real people.
Dr. Fals-Stewart, who researches and treats alcohol- and drug-abusing patients, has been charged with twelve felonies.
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