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California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools

Judge Orders Diploma-Mill Operator to Pay $22.7-Million in Class-Action Lawsuit

09/10/2012

The Chronicle of Higher Education - September 7, 2012

A federal judge has ordered a Pakistani man and two of his companies, Belford High School and Belford University, to pay $22.7-million in a class-action lawsuit originally filed by a Michigan woman who accused the businesses of selling worthless degrees, according to the news Web site MLive.com.The judgment, handed down last week by Judge Mark A. Goldsmith of the U.S. District Court in Flint, Mich., reflects the roughly $250 price of each diploma sold to 30,500 American students from 2003 to 2009, when the lawsuit was filed, multiplied by three. The defendant, Salem Kureshi, had argued that his operations were not a sham, but the judge rejected his claims and ordered him to comply with the terms of the judgment. A spokesman for Belford University, which is based in Humble, Tex., declined to comment on the lawsuit.