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The Manti Te'o of Physics 101

theodp writes "When it comes to tales of fake girlfriends, Manti Te'o can't hold a candle to theoretical particle physicist Paul Frampton. In November 2011, writes the NY Times' Maxine Swann in 'The Professor, the Bikini Model and the Suitcase Full of Trouble,' Frampton met who he says he thought was Czech bikini model Denise Milani on A Yahoo Messenger romance bloomed, at least in the 68-year-old Frampton's mind (Frampton's ex-wife was a self-described 'physics groupie'). But before starting their perfect life together, fake Denise asked Frampton for one little favor — would he be so kind as to bring her a bag that she had left in La Paz, Bolivia? Yep, bad idea. The UNC Louis D. Rubin, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy soon found himself in a Buenos Aries prison, charged with transporting two kilos of cocaine into Argentina. Currently serving a four years and eight months sentence under house arrest, Frampton reportedly continues to supervise his two current PhD students by phone, and still finds time to post to the Physics archive."
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The Manti Te'o of Physics

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  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Saturday March 09, 2013 @03:50PM (#43127087) Journal

    What would be odd, though, about the 'it was deliberate' case is that(at least going by popular accounts and a rough survey of people who get caught) being a coke mule is kind of a shitty job. Lots of surplus value in the supply chain as a whole; but not a terribly compelling slice(especially given the legal, and in some methods lethal, hazards involved) of that actually goes to the peon doing the carrying.

    I'd assume that squeaky-clean white Americans are rather more desirable mules than 'impecunious locals who don't have a convincing story for how they even bought a ticket', because they are less suspicious and more likely to bring the package to its destination, unless the sniffer dogs get them; but unless the premium paid is pretty good, it still seems like a strange career move, particularly for somebody sharp enough to hack it as a physicist.

    It wouldn't be the first time that somebody did something moronic; but 'coke mule' is not high on the list of fantasy dream jobs...

  • Always True.... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by the eric conspiracy ( 20178 ) on Saturday March 09, 2013 @04:22PM (#43127259)

    There is no fool like an old fool.

  • by Locke2005 ( 849178 ) on Sunday March 10, 2013 @12:30PM (#43131429)
    He knew damn well what was in the bag! After being warned by a friend that it probably had drugs sewn into the lining, he opened it up and (supposedly) decided it was empty. Then he filled it with his own clothes to make it look less suspicious. Kinda hard to miss 2Kg of coke, isn't it? This is a guy that was so delusional he actually thought if he smuggled coke for this Milani chick, that she was going to fall in love with him and marry him... despite the fact that he had never spoken to her in person.

Houston, Tranquillity Base here. The Eagle has landed. -- Neil Armstrong