The State Grand Jury has handed down an indictment against a University of South Carolina program manager for public corruption charges, according to the state Attorney General’s office.
Indictments released Tuesday accuse 48-year-old Blake Langland of unlawfully diverting roughly $650,000 in federal grant money to himself through a company he partially owned. Langland is a project manager in USC’s College of Engineering and Computing. The school’s website notes he was project chief for the engineering college’s Virtual Test Bed program. His team was developing ways to design electric ship systems, according to a 2010 announcement from USC .
The indictments state Langland routed money from an Office of Naval Research grant to himself and his business SysEDA Inc., by billing the school two different times for work which he and other state employees did. Specifically, the indictment accuses him of using a second business he owned — Design Information Technology — to invoice “consulting” work which he and other USC staff and students did during normal hours.
“Langland was essentially able to ‘double dip’ and pad his full-time salary by charging USC… for work that he and others were already being paid as a state employee to do,” the indictment states.
SysEDA created the Virtual Test Bed power simulation program, according to the 2010 press release.
Langland faces one count of using his official position or office for financial gain, one count of accepting rebates or extra compensation and three counts of receiving anything of value to influence a public employee.
A USC spokesman said Langland was suspended without pay Tuesday.