Everybody’s favorite love-sick professor, Paul Frampton, has been found guilty of drug smuggling by an Argentine court. You’ll recall that Frampton, age 68 and a whiz at physics, was arrested some months ago when caught red-handed with a suitcase full of cocaine and a heart full of dreams. He’d flown to South America in hopes of a hook-up with a former Miss Bikini World, but was left at he airport alone and literally holding the bag.
As he whiled away his hours in a jail cell thousands of miles away, his faculty colleagues back at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill naturally rallied ’round Frampton, demanding that he continue to receive his $107,000 salary because the university didn’t follow “standard grievance procedures” before suspending his pay.
But the plot has thickened. The court heard the following evidence:
A prosecutor presented the court with calculations of the drug’s value in Frampton’s handwriting, and with texts and emails ostensibly to the model, Miss Bikini World 2007 Denise Milani, sent the day before his arrest.
According to the Buenos Aires newspaper Clarin, the messages to Milani, and to a friend in the United States, included ‘I’m worried about the sniffer dogs,’ ‘I’m looking after your special little suitcase’ and ‘In Bolivia this is worth nothing, in Europe it’s worth millions.’
The handwritten note said ‘1grm/200U$S. 2000grms/400000 U$S.’
Frampton said Wednesday that he had written the note after the drugs were found while sitting in a room at the airport waiting for the police to finish their work.
He said that when they found and weighed the drugs, he was shocked, and, being a numbers man, idly began wondering what they were worth and did a quick calculation.
Two police officers, he said, testified during the trial that they didn’t remember whether he wrote anything after the drugs were found, and two said he had not.
Frampton said that after 10 months, they surely wouldn’t remember such a detail.
According to the Winston-Salem newsobserver.com Frampton was:
sentenced to four years and eight months of confinement Monday afternoon after three days of hearings. He expects to serve his sentence under house arrest at a friend’s apartment in Buenos Aires.
“As you might imagine I am in a state of shock and disbelief,” Frampton said in a telephone interview Wednesday night. “This is a gross miscarriage of justice. If this had happened in the United States, a jury would have obviously acquitted me.”
Maybe so, Professor Frampton, maybe so. In the meantime, don’t count your kilos until they’ve been sold.