Ex-Cleveland employee faces extortion charges for allegedly soliciting bribes

CLEVELAND - A former city of Cleveland employee was indicted on extortion charges after he solicited bribes, U.S. Attorneys and the FBI said.

Lejon C. Woods, 29, of Cleveland was a contract compliance officer and told representatives from three companies that he would change their records for cash, the indictment said. The incidents happened between May 2010 and August 2010.

"The businesses solicited by Woods were not involved in any type of illegal conduct," said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio in a news release on Tuesday. "To the contrary, these companies should be commended because they came forward and contacted law enforcement when Woods made his bribe solicitations."

Woods was given or tried to get $1,200, $2,800 and $3,000 from the three companies, the indictment said.

He was charged with three counts of extortion under color of official right for being in violation of the Hobbs Act.

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