Kris Hundley, Times Staff Writer

Kris Hundley

Kris Hundley has been a reporter with the Times for more than a decade. She has covered the business of health care, from the doctor's office to Medicare to the FDA. In 2008, she traveled to India on a fellowship from the International Center for Journalists to research the growing business of clinical drug trials in that country.

Phone: (727) 892-2996

Email: khundley@tampabay.com

Twitter: @HundleyKris

  1. Spring Hill cancer doctors get highest Medicare reimbursements in Tampa Bay

    Health

    Three doctors with Florida Cancer Specialists in Spring Hill rank as the Tampa Bay area's most highly reimbursed providers by Medicare in 2012.

    Drs. Vikas Malhotra, Mary Li and Thomas Huayang Tang received a total of more than $20 million from the federal health program for seniors and the disabled, according to data released Wednesday.

    All are oncologists, a medical specialty that dominates the list of the most highly reimbursed Medicare providers, in large part because of the expensive drugs they use....

    Mary Li
  2. Large telemarketer for charities declares bankruptcy

    Business

    One of the nation's largest charity telemarketing firms filed for bankruptcy Thursday.

    But the Chapter 11 filing by Michigan-based Associated Community Services is unlikely to end the phone calls from its employees, who solicit in Florida and 40 other states for some of America's poorest performing charities.

    In a court filing, company president Richard Cole asked for approval to continue paying Associated Community Services' nearly 900 employees in order to remain in business. ...

  3. BP questioning oil spill payments to some Tampa Bay area businesses (w/video)

    Business

    Who deserves to be compensated for the catastrophic BP oil spill of 2010?

    A water scooter rental on John's Pass in Madeira Beach?

    A restaurant on Gulfport's waterfront?

    How about a septic tank cleaning service in Pasco County, a blueberry farm in Hernando or a funeral home in Plant City?

    The answers may surprise you.

    Under the terms of a class-action settlement signed two years ago, BP doesn't owe anything to the water scooter business or the waterfront restaurant....

    Richard Love, owner of Service Bindery Enterprises in St. Petersburg, says he’s not certain if his loss of business in 2010 was because of the spill, but he filed a claim anyway.
  4. No accounting for $40 million in charity shipped overseas

    Business

    GUATEMALA CITY — In 2010, one of Central America's poorest countries received huge shipments of humanitarian aid from an unlikely source.

    That year Guatemala, where 20 percent of the population lives on less than $1 a day, got $40 million worth of free medicine and medical supplies.

    It didn't come from the Red Cross or UNICEF or any other major international relief agency....

    Roberto Gramajo handled medical donations from 15 U.S. charities to Guatemala’s Order of Malta until he left in 2011. But Gramajo would not specify who received those donations.
  5. Ex-Navy Veterans charity aide suspended from practicing law

    Business

    Karmika V. Rubin, former executive assistant and special counsel to Bobby Thompson and the U.S. Navy Veterans Association, has been suspended from practicing law in Florida.

    But the suspension is unrelated to her work with the fraudulent veterans charity and its founder, who was convicted on racketeering, money laundering and identity theft charges late last year.

    Rubin, 40, was suspended by Florida's Supreme Court in December for failing to respond to an inquiry by the state bar association. The group was investigating a complaint that Rubin had misappropriated $6,600 in a client's account. According to the petition to the court, Rubin repeatedly refused to comply with a subpoena for financial records. "The non-compliance was willful," the petition said....

    Karmika Rubin worked for the sham charity Navy Veterans of Tampa as an assistant and counsel.
  6. Bobby Thompson sentenced to 28 years in Navy Veterans charity scam

    Business

    Ohio's case against Bobby Thompson came to a close Monday with a judge in Cleveland handing a 28-year sentence to the man convicted of running a nationwide charity scam from an Ybor City duplex.

    As a special punishment, the judge ordered that the mastermind behind the fraudulent U.S. Navy Veterans Association spend each Veterans Day in solitary confinement for the duration of his prison term....

    Bobby Thompson speaks Monday during his sentencing on racketeering, theft and money laundering charges. Thompson, whose real name is John Donald Cody, complained about alleged abusive treatment by jailers while locked up during the trial. He was sentenced to 28 years in prison for defrauding donors of up to $100 million in 41 states through the United States Navy Veterans Association, a charity he ran in Tampa.
  7. Loophole protects telemarketers that hire felons to call you for money

    Crime

    No one disputes that Police Protective Fund hired felons at its five Florida call centers to solicit donations from the public.

    State regulators raided the charity's phone rooms in September after the Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting named Police Protective Fund one of the nation's worst charities based on how much it spent over a decade on telemarketing.

    They found convicted felons among those working the phones and arrested four of the charity's managers on charges they made the hires....

    A dry erase board is used to log numbers at one of the telemarketing offices of Police Protective Fund.
  8. Veterans charity paid its own founder to provide medical care

    Business

    Editor's note: As part of a yearlong investigation into charities across the nation, the Tampa Bay Times and its reporting partner, the Center for Investigative Reporting, asked readers to suggest nonprofits for closer review. This story is part of an occasional series revealing what we found.

    Healing Heroes Network has a mission that tugs at the heartstrings: providing financial assistance to veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan so they can get critical medical care....

  9. Getting off the beaten path in rural — and spectacular — Wyoming

    Travel

    CENTENNIAL, Wyo.

    I hear the Tetons are spectacular. But we didn't make it to Jackson Hole during a trip to Wyoming over the summer. We took the road less traveled, something I would recommend next year when the snow stops flying.

    Centennial (pop. 270) is about a three-hour drive northwest of the Denver airport, just over the Colorado line. It's little more than a cluster of a half-dozen or so buildings strung along Highway 130 — a few hotels, a general store and a museum commemorating the town's railroad, mining and timber history. ...

    In the Medicine Bow National Forest and the surrounding region in Wyoming there are high expanses and valleys, canyons and snowy ranges. And quiet.
  10. These telemarketers never stray from the script

    News

    Amanda Thomas is the perfect telemarketer.
    She's always perky and pleasant. She races through her pitch without a stumble or pause. She never deviates from the script....

    Iowa regulators have used this phone in the state attorney general’s office for years to secretly record telemarketing calls.
  11. One telemarketing company's aggressive tactics show how wasteful charities make millions from easy targets.

    News

    Judith Johnson of Stacyville, Iowa, doesn't get out much anymore.
    Legally blind and living on a small Social Security pension, the 72-year-old used to go to church once a week. She stopped out of fear that her new walker would snag on the railroad tracks she had to cross to get there....

    Judith Johnson of Stacyville, Iowa, sits next to a box containing mail solicitations she received over six months from various charities.
  12. U.S. Navy Veterans Association charity fraud trial ends with Bobby Thompson guilty on all counts

    Criminal

    CLEVELAND — He claimed to be a retired Naval commander and raised more than $100 million from generous Americans for his charity in Tampa.

    He told his lawyer he got funding for U.S. Navy Veterans Association from a "black box" CIA budget and said in court filings that he was working under "non-official cover" for the agency.

    But in the end, a jury here decided that Bobby Thompson, 66, was less James Bond and more run-of-the-mill con man. On Thursday, they convicted him on 23 counts of fraud, money laundering and theft in a charity scam first brought to light by a Tampa Bay Times investigation in 2010. ...

    Bobby Thompson closes his eyes as the verdict is read by the judge Thursday in Cleveland. Thompson was convicted of racketeering, theft, money laundering and other charges.
  13. Verdict in Bobby Thompson fraud trial to be announced at 9 a.m. Thursday

    Criminal

    CLEVELAND — It took the jury only three hours to decide Bobby Thompson's fate.

    But he won't learn it until Thursday. The verdict wasn't announced Wednesday afternoon because a court reporter was unavailable and the defense attorney was picking up his son at day care. The public will learn the jury's decision Thursday at 9 a.m.

    The announcement of the jury's speedy deliberations capped an eventful two days in the fraud trial in connection with the U.S. Navy Veterans Association charity that Thompson founded in Tampa....

  14. Defense rests with no witnesses called in Bobby Thompson case

    Criminal

    CLEVELAND — Jurors here were shocked Tuesday afternoon when the defense in the Bobby Thompson case rested without calling a single witness.

    Not even Thompson himself.

    It was the latest twist in a lengthy trial that has been alternately boring and bizarre.

    Thompson, 66, has been charged by Ohio officials with fraud, money laundering and identity theft in connection with his operation of U.S. Navy Veterans Association in Tampa. ...

    A disheveled Bobby Thompson listens Tuesday in a Cleveland courtroom. He faces fraud, money laundering and ID theft charges in connection to the Navy Vets charity in Tampa.
  15. Bobby Thompson's testimony delayed in U.S. Navy Veterans Association trial

    Criminal

    CLEVELAND — Bobby Thompson's appearance on the stand will have to wait.

    Early Wednesday, his attorney's wife went into labor with the couple's second child.

    Barring other interruptions, court will resume Tuesday with Thompson's long-awaited testimony.

    Thompson, 66, has been accused by Ohio's attorney general of fraud, money laundering and theft in connection with his operation of U.S. Navy Veterans Association....

    Bobby Thompson, whose real name is John Donald Cody, ran a charity that claimed to benefit Navy veterans from an Ybor City office.