Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Federal bribery case against Tampa towing company owner dismissed

TAMPA — A federal judge Thursday dismissed the bribery case against an accused co-conspirator of former Hillsborough County Commissioner Kevin White, agreeing that the towing company owner was not competent to stand trial.

The ruling, made at the government's request, came a day before attorneys were scheduled to meet to discuss the mental state of George Hondrellis.

Hondrellis, the owner of Tampa City Towing, was accused in 2011 after a federal investigation of initiating bribery discussions with White's father for influence on the Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission while White served as its chairman.

Hondrellis faced charges that included bribery, wire and mail fraud and conspiracy.

But he had been found mentally incompetent to go to trial. In late 2011, a magistrate judge said at a hearing that Hondrellis would receive medication and treatment at a Miami hospital.

In a court motion filed Thursday, U.S. Attorney Robert O'Neill asked that the indictment against Hondrellis be dismissed without prejudice — leaving open the possibility that the case could be resurrected in the future.

U.S. District Judge James Whittemore signed the order to close the case.

White was convicted on seven of 10 corruption charges for accepting $6,000 in bribes from an undercover FBI agent seeking his influence to obtain a towing license from the PTC. The former commissioner is serving a three-year federal prison sentence.

Federal bribery case against Tampa towing company owner dismissed 02/07/13 [Last modified: Thursday, February 7, 2013 11:29pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Column: Trump beat Bush, Rubio but has become an 'establishment sellout'


    NYT’s Ross Douthat's Sunday column: Donald Trump, Establishment Sellout

  2. Haitians get a reprieve from Trump administration


    Haitians living in Florida, and the rest of the country, will be allowed to stay an additional six months, federal officials have decided.

  3. Veteran big game hunter dies after elephant, felled by gunfire, collapses on him


    Theunis Botha led his first guided hunting safari through South Africa's grasslands in 1989. A college student at the time, he used the money he received to help put himself through school.

    Big game hunter Theunis Botha, shown here with elephant tusks, was killed during a hunt in west Zimbabwe.
  4. Hey, somebody really ought to write about this Aaron Judge guy


    He can catch, too.

    It's no tall tale.

    Aaron Judge, The Amazing Colossal Man, has come and gone, but not before he stunned the Rays with a diving, game-saving catch in the sixth inning of Yankees 3-2 win Sunday at Tropicana Field. The 6-foot-7, 282-pound Judge robbed Evan Longoria of an RBI double and helped …

    Aaron Judge stunned the Rays with a diving, game-saving catch in the sixth inning of Yankees 3-2 win Sunday at Tropicana Field.
  5. Review: Don't miss Israel Horovitz's 'Gloucester Blue' at Jobsite Theater


    TAMPA — Sometimes a show comes along that does everything. It engages the senses on every level, tells a story that feels real, and keeps you guessing to the end.

    Ned Averill-Snell (left) plays Latham and Landon Green is Stumpy in Jobsite Theater's Gloucester Blue. Photo by Pritchard Photography.