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NAS Expels Archaeologist

The US National Academy of Sciences has expelled the archaeologist Luis Jaime Castillo Butters from its membership, Science reports. It adds this is the first time NAS has expelled an international member.

According to Science, the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru conducted a sexual harassment investigation of Castillo Butters in 2020 after Michael Balter reported at his blog on a number sexual harassment allegations that had been made against him. Science notes that while the university found evidence that Castillo Butters sexually harassed others, it was unable to take further action as the incidents occurred before it adopted policies against sexual harassment in 2016. NAS, though, removed him from its ranks earlier this month, it says.

Science adds that Castillo Butters has denied the allegations and called the NAS process unfair.

Castillo Butters is the third member NAS has ejected since it adopted a mechanism in 2019 to be able to remove members found to have violated its code of conduct. The academy previously removed Geoff Marcy and Francisco Ayala from its membership.