Generic Crime

The senior director of UF’s Housing and Residence Education was arrested Monday after allegedly using $180,607.65 in university funds for personal gain and benefit, police said.

Azfar Mian, 41, and five other housing officials were placed on administrative leave Monday, wrote UF spokesperson Janine Sikes in an email.

The other five UF Housing officials placed on leave are Jennifer Andrews, Mian’s executive assistant; Stina Schoneck, the associate director of financial services; Kevin Morgan, a UF Information Technology worker for the Housing department; Dirk Smith, a warehouse and stores specialist; and Curtis Harris, a Housing employee, according to an email that was sent internally among UF Housing staff and obtained by the Alligator.

All five employees worked under Mian’s supervision and were placed on leave for potential involvement, Sikes said.

All six, including Mian, have been trespassed from UF’s campus pending an investigation, which could take up to eight weeks, according to the email.

In the email, Housing staff was instructed not to make any statements regarding the incident before the investigation is complete.

Norb Dunkel, an associate vice president of Student Affairs and a former UF Housing executive director, will oversee the department in the interim, Vice President of Student Affairs David Parrott wrote in an email to students.

The UF Office of Internal Audit started investigating Mian’s funds in April after several employees anonymously reported that Housing officials were using their positions within the department to make fraudulent reimbursement and expenses claims and misused funds, according to a University Police arrest report.

Though the investigation is still ongoing, Mian is believed to have used university funds to buy items including televisions, household furniture, cell phones and meal reimbursements, according to the report.

The audit claims Mian used $37,171.07 on electronic equipment, $1,798.27 in fraudulent FedEx purchases, $44,910.98 on furniture, $24,800.84 on household items, $11,509.83 on items such as lawnmowers and trimmers and $44,108.15 on miscellaneous personal goods including seven cell phones and internet and electricity for Mian’s home.

From Jan. 3, 2016 to July 30, 2017, Mian also allegedly claimed the lunches he bought using his personal credit and debit card on campus were business expenses and had them reimbursed, according to the report.

Mian allegedly used his UF Purchasing Card to buy the $44,910.98 worth of furniture at Furniture Kingdom, located at 1420 NW 23rd Ave., on two separate occasions in November 2016.

Mian bought one dining table, six chairs and two arm chairs and told UF Housing they were located in “Advisor Residence” areas in student housing dorms, according to the report.

Police found one of the dining sets Mian allegedly purchased in pictures Mian’s wife posted on Facebook that show the inside of their home and rear patio area.

Mian told police he had the furniture at his house but said he was storing it and planned to bring the items back, according to the report. Officers with a search warrant found a number of the items identified by UF Internal Audit employees in Mian’s home and garage.

Mian has been with the Housing department for more than 13 years and became senior director last year, Sikes said.

“The university is in the process of recovering property now and will seek full restitution,” Sikes said.

As of press time, Mian remains in the Alachua County Jail and is being held without a bond. He faces a charge of grand theft.

Staff Writer

David Hoffman is an investigative reporter for The Alligator. A rising UF history and economics senior, the 21-year-old lives and breathes for classy Parks and Recreation references and watching live performances of the Red Hot Chili Peppers on YouTube.