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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -
The U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia insists his office is out to stop corruption and theft at the Marine Corps Logistics base.
After four guilty pleas in five weeks by former employees and vendors, the federal prosecutor says investigations at the base are not over, and more charges could be filed.
U.S. Attorney Michael Moore said MCLB Albany is not anymore corrupt than other military bases or government institutions, but good law enforcement and leadership at the base uncovered millions of dollars in theft. And he says his office is going to stop it.
U.S. Attorney Michael Moore said the corruption and thefts at MCLB Albany are serious problems.
Moore said "When you are talking about millions of dollars, it's a big deal."
Two former employees and two vendors doing business with Albany's Marine Base have pled guilty in federal court to bribery schemes since mid January. But Moore says he doesn't want the few criminals to mar the reputation of the base and its mostly good employees.
Moore said "What I am focused on is making sure that we root out the bad apples. You know pull them out of the barrel before they do. Before the corruption gets any worse."
67 year old Shelby Janes, the former inventory control manager of the base's distribution management center, pled guilty to arranging for heavy equipment like cranes and bulldozers to be driven off the base, and sold. Moore called Janes' crimes egregious and in your face. Now more federal investigations of corruption at the base are still ongoing, with likely more people, possibly both base employees and vendors in the community, to be charged.
Moore said "We're just coming in saying enough to some folks who have decided to ultimately steal from the taxpayers. I mean when you steal from the base, you steal from the military, whatever it is, you are stealing from every good tax paying citizen out there. So I've had enough."
The four people who have pled guilty to bribery charges could face up to 15 years in prison and be forced to pay restitution of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Several base employees have told WALB News 10 they're worried the corruption could hurt the base's future with government cutbacks underway. Moore said eliminating corruption will help the base, the local economy, and taxpayers across the country in the long run.
Michael Moore would not discuss ongoing investigations, but said as a general rule people facing tough sentences cooperate give information to prosecutors. He did confirm his office still has several investigations ongoing at MCLB Albany.