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VA Crook Gets Wrist-Slap Sentence For 64 Criminal Counts

A Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) director will spend under five years in prison after being convicted of 64 corruption charges.

William D. Montague, former director of the Cleveland and Dayton VA medical centers, pleaded guilty in 2014 to 64 of the 65 corruption-related accounts levied against him by federal prosecutors. He confessed to a scheme in which he took money from contractors in exchange for inside information, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).

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Montague’s criminal convictions include conspiracy to commit mail, wire and honest services mail fraud, Hobbs Act Conspiracy, disclosing public contract information, money laundering, and making a false, fictitious or fraudulent statement, according to court records obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation. (RELATED: Two Scandal-Plagued VA Execs Just Returned To Their Cushy Positions As Directors)

It wasn’t until last week that Montague, 63, was sentenced for “secretly” using his position to “enrich” himself and his designees. He was the final defendant of more than 60 in an FBI investigation into Cuyahoga County, Ohio’s, “pay to play” political system, according to Cleveland.com.

Montague, the Cleveland VA medical center director from 1995 until February, 2010, and the Dayton VA medical center director for nine months in 2011, solicited and accepted gifts and payments from a design firm in exchange for information on VA contracts and projects that would benefit the business.

The court allowed Montague to remain free on bond until his sentencing, which was delayed by lingering court proceedings. Montague has paid nearly $390,000 in restitution. He also has to perform 400 hours of community service.

“As a Veterans Affairs Medical Center Director, William Montague undertook a responsibility to serve the public but instead he chose to become self-serving, accepting bribes and kickbacks in exchange for favorable official actions,” Stephen D. Anthony, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Cleveland Field Office, said in a statement. “The FBI and our law enforcement partners will continue to aggressively pursue those who abuse the trust we place in public servants to act in the community’s best interest.”

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