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Aug. 18, 2011

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Former Harris County Deputy Sentenced to Prison for Extortion

Deputy’s wife also sentenced to prison for concealing husband’s criminal activity

HOUSTON - A former Harris County Deputy Sheriff and his wife, charged and convicted for their respective roles in the deputy’s criminal activities, have been sentenced to prison by U.S. District Judge Keith P. Elliso, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

George Wesley Ellington, 39, of Houston, a former Harris County deputy sheriff convicted of extortion under color of official right after pleading guilty to the offense on April 14, 2011, was sentenced this morning to 60 months in federal prison without parole to be followed by a two-year-term of supervised release. Today’s hearing was the culmination of an investigation conducted by the Harris County Sheriff’s Department and the FBI. That investigation established that in April 2010 Ellington accepted a $500 bribe for using his position as a then Harris County deputy sheriff to access confidential information from secured law enforcement databases and for providing security/protection in his official capacity to a person he believed was illegally possessing and transporting 3, 4 Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly called Ecstasy. 

Judge Ellison also sentenced Ellington’s wife, Tania Katrisse Ellington, 31, to 12 months and a day in federal prison without parole to be followed by a one-year-term of supervised release for knowingly concealing her husband’s criminal activities. Tania Ellington pleaded guilty on April 26, 2011, to misprision of a felony. 

Both Ellingtons were permitted to remain on bond pending the issuance of a court order to surrender to a Bureau of Prisons facility to be designated in the near future.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Daniel C. Rodriguez and F. Andino Reynal prosecuted the case.