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Former Jeanerette mayor arrested for the fourth time

Current mayor says the town is doing well financially and records-wise.
Posted at 12:48 PM, Sep 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-21 23:10:58-04

Aprill Foulcard, former mayor of Jeanerette who is facing Medicaid fraud charges in Baton Rouge, malfeasance charges in Iberia Parish as well as theft and fraud charges in New Iberia, has been arrested again.

A spokesman for Attorney General Jeff Landry tells KATC that Foulcard - this time - was booked with 3 counts - Illegal Transmission of Monetary Funds, 3 counts - Bank Fraud, 1 count - Criminal Conspiracy and 1 count - Government Benefits Fraud.

Foulcard was arrested in June by the New Iberia Police department, accused of theft between $5,000 and $25,000 and bank fraud. In that case, police allege that Foulcard went to a financial institution and requested nearly $10,000 in US Currency be transferred to her bank account from an individual’s account who had not authorized Foulcard to do so.

In March 2020, she was booked on five counts of malfeasance in office. Those charges were related to past audits of the city, State Police said at the time. According to the initial complaint provided by Louisiana State Police, investigators began looking into Foulcard on May 2019 following the results of an audit.

During Foulcard's only term as mayor, the city's auditors were unable to conduct an audit for three of those years because the city's records were in such disarray it was impossible. After three years of that, the state Legislative Auditor's committee appointed a fiscal administrator to take over the operations of the city. That happened in March 2018.

State law requires an audit to be performed annually for governments like that of Jeanerette, and the fact that auditors couldn't do so for Jeanerette forms the basis of the current charges against Foulcard, and State Police records obtained by KATC Investigates show.

That year, auditors still couldn't do an audit of the city's finances, but they were able to cobble together a financial report. Among the findings were so many unpaid utility bills that collecting them would cover operating costs for the utility and around $275,000 in deilnquent property taxes. The audit details how the fiscal administrator is trying to clean up the mess. To read that story - and the audit - click here: Jeanerette audit: unpaid utility bills and property taxes, defaults on grants

Since the state appointed a fiscal administrator, current mayor Carol Bourgeois Jr. says the town is doing well financially and records-wise.

"As a whole, the city is doing pretty well. We were under state control, we had a fiscal administrator, that was assigned by the state," he said. "All our audit reports since I’ve been in office, we’ve had one... two... getting ready to do our third audit. And we’ve gotten good reports."

In April 2018, Foulcard,, her borther, Berwick Francis and other family members were indicted in a Baton Rouge court for racketeering and Medicaid fraud. The family company, JABA Enterprises, also was named in the indictment.

The indictments were expected, following investigations by the state Department of Health into JABA Enterprises. To read our story about that, click here. She was indicted for racketeering, conspiracy, fraud, falsifying public records and money laundering, among other charges, in that case.