Chikaodinaka Nwankpa, 57, was charged this week with theft for illegal theft and theft by mistake, both crimes, according to the Philadelphia Public Prosecutor's Office.
Nwankpa is the former chairman of the university's Engineering Department, a press release said. It was not clear how the grant money was intended to be used.
"Mr. Nwankpa inappropriately and criminally embezzled tens of thousands of dollars that were allocated for research purposes for his own pleasure. He betrayed Drexel University and the paying students he received to educate," said district attorney Larry Krasner .
CNN tried to contact Nwankpa, but has not yet reached him and has not determined whether he has legal representation.
Nwankpa's alleged spending was noted when an audit showed several unauthorized and unpaid purchases between 2010 and 2017, according to the statement. The professor tried to pass on the strip club's expenses such as food and board costs, the document said.
He spent more than $ 96,000 on adult entertainment venues and sports bars, in addition to more than $ 89,000 on iTunes purchases, meals and other unauthorized purchases, the statement said. Many of the charges were processed between midnight and two in the morning, the prosecution said.
Nwankpa was put on administrative leave after an investigation began and then resigned.
Philadelphia-based Drexel University paid $ 190,000 in a settlement after a separate federal investigation into the former professor's alleged misuse of funds by grants, the statement said. The professor paid Drexel $ 53,328, prosecutors said in October.
Nwankpa was arrested by the university's police and released on $ 25,000 bail earlier this week. He handed over his passport and is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on January 29, the statement said.
Drexel spokeswoman Niki Gianakaris told CNN: "Drexel takes allegations of unethical or illegal commercial conduct on the part of any member of the university community very seriously. The University initially reported this situation to the US Attorney's Office and worked in cooperation with federal and state investigations. on the subject. "