University of Montana researcher admits to federal fraud

A man doing research at the University of Montana admitted to falsifying documents related to a federal investigation, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.

The defendant, Braxton A. Norwood, 43, from Marburg, Germany, pleaded guilty on June 27 to falsification of records in a federal investigation, according to court filings and a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 30 in front of U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen. Norwood faces a maximum possible penalty of 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and at least three years of supervised release.

Norwood was the owner and CEO of Expesicor LLC, which conducted neurological disorder research at UM’s campus in Missoula. The company received federal dollars from the National Institutes of Health (an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services).

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Norwood’s position directed projects for federal research grants given to Expesicor.

“Between 2019 and 2021, Expesicor received $515,163 in federal grant funding from the National Institutes of Health,” the news release stated. “As further alleged, Norwood used Lab Surplus to purchase items on behalf of Expesicor.”

People grew suspicious about his purchases and federal officials launched

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