Despite claiming to help almost 100,000 veterans annually, the former director of a Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center was indicted yesterday on 36 criminal counts, including money laundering.

William D. Montague, 61, of Breksville, Ohio was charged with with conspiracy to commit mail fraud, bribery, money laundering, wire fraud and disclosing public contract information, among other charges.

By accepting bribes from local business leaders during an expansion process as director of the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, he in turn influenced development projects and other decisions with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Stephen D. Anthony, special agent in charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Cleveland office, said Montague "misled staff and misused his position to enrich himself and businesses pursuing contracts with the Veterans Administration."

The Cleveland VA Center was the fifth-largest in the U.S., serving about 95,000 veterans in 24 Northeast Ohio counties. He began working for the VA in 1975 until his retirement in 2010, according to the indictment.

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