Doctors, politicians, lawyers were among the hundreds who bought fake degrees from the Axact diploma mill.
“All of us can be harmed by any professional that … does not have the full extent of training that his credentials purport that he has,” Ezell said.
According to Ezell the fake degree mill was probably grossing $ 1 billion a year with 35 bank accounts in 19 different countries.
Axact executive pleads guilty in ‘diploma mill’ scam, faces 20 years in US prison The Axact fake degree scandal engulfed Canada, after investigations by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and an international publication revealed over 800 Canadian citizens purchased fake degrees from the software company.
The revelations were made in an article published by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, which states that over 800 Canadian citizens purchased fake degrees from Axact.
Former FBI agent, Allen Ezell, who was probing the Axact “diploma mill” case, said this is just one operation and it does not specify the number of fake degrees sold in Canada on the whole.
In the regard, the case of Gilbert Correces is very important, who acquired one such Almeda University degree from Axact. Correces was previously a contractor, but he is now a “psychotherapist”.
But the PhD and Correces’s alma mater are both fake. Almeda University is affiliated with Axact’s international diploma mill scheme, and is not an accredited post-secondary institution.
Yasir Jamshaid, a former quality assurance employee of Axact, said 95 per cent of the education customers “were crooks themselves.”
“They knew they’re buying something that is not real but they’re still going for it. They’re not innocent.”
Jamshaid said that when he blew the whistle on the software company in early 2015, Axact had by then recovered approximately $600,000 for about 20 customers who he believes were actually deceived.
In connection with the scandal, a US court on August 29 sentenced an Axact executive, Umair Hamid, to 21 months in prison and levied a fine of $5,303,020 “for his role in an international diploma mill scheme operated through the Pakistani company”.
“Hamid, 31, of Karachi, Pakistan, pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison”, according to a press statement by US Department of Justice in April, this year.
He was arrested on Dec 19, 2016, according to a statement by former Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara. He was produced in a federal court in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky, the following day.