Acuña — who received a Ph.D. in education — finances numerous Peruvian universities, making Tuesday’s accusation especially embarrassing. The candidate and businessman is currently in second place in Peru’s presidential race, with voters going to the polls in April 2016.
Acuña received his Ph.D. from Spain’s prestigious Complutense University in 2009, according to Spanish daily El Pais. A staff member of Peru’s Pontifical Catholic University used plagiarism detection software called Turnitin and found similarities in the first 165 pages of the presidential candidate’s thesis. According to reports, 80% of the thesis was not properly cited, prompting Complutense University to launch an investigation.
Acuña has not commented on the ongoing investigation of his doctoral studies. However, he has removed his Ph.D. thesis from the website Scribd, according to Peru Reports.
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