Top TA Municipality official escapes attempted hit

Shota Hovel unharmed after his car explodes in Holon; police launch criminal investigation.

A senior Tel Aviv Municipality official who has come under police investigation in the past was targeted by a bomb planted in his car in Holon on Sunday morning.
Shota Hovel, the influential head of the construction oversight department at the Tel Aviv Municipality, entered his car shortly before 7 a.m. on Holon’s Rehov Arlozorov and drove about 100 meters before the small bomb went off.
Hovel was unharmed, though his vehicle was damaged. Stunned neighbors described hearing a large explosion that shook their homes.
“The background to this incident is criminal. The device damaged Hovel’s car and two to three additional cars parked nearby,” a Tel Aviv police spokeswoman told The Jerusalem Post. “A police bomb squad was dispatched to the address and collected samples from the car scene,” she added.
Hovel said he did not know who would try to hurt him. He added that he would continue his working day as usual.
Hovel recently recently returned to his post after being suspended dueto corruption suspicions. In 2008, he was arrested on suspicion ofturning a blind eye to building irregularities on the Tel Avivshoreline in exchange for receiving benefits from businessmen, whopolice suspected had registered Hovel as a joint owner of some of theirproperties.
Hovel denied all the allegations of wrongdoing, and the case was eventually dropped due to lack of evidence.
In 2003, he was questioned by police in connection with a briberyaffair centering on Tel Aviv parking lots, but was never charged.