- Former U.S. Department of Education Deputy Undersecretary Robert Shireman is under investigation by federal prosecutors for allegedly sharing sensitive information about new regulations on for-profit colleges with the Institute for College Access and Success, or TICAS, an advocacy group he founded.
- The Education Dept.'s general inspector and civil lawyers from the Justice Department are leading the investigation, which is being treated as a civil infraction with the possibility for criminal penalties.
- If Shireman is found in violation of federal conflicts-of-interest law, which is meant to keep government officials from taking part in decisions that might hold a financial interest for them, he could face criminal penalties and as much as $50,000 per violation in civil fines.
From the article:
... "We have documents showing your involvement or interaction with TICAS in matters pending before the U.S. Department of Education in violation of the statute," Justice Department lawyers wrote in a letter to Mr. Shireman in April 2012. "Your conduct may render you personally liable," the letter stated. The letter and other legal documents showing the Justice Department's interest in Mr. Shireman were recently disclosed as part of a legal proceeding on the scope of a subpoena request. ...