The government's chief attorney during the administration of Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard has lost his lawsuit to force Broussard's ex-wife to pay him as much as $35,508. Tom Wilkinson sought the money from Karen Parker, saying he paid more restitution than necessary and she paid less after their federal corruption convictions. A Louisiana state judge hearing the suit has concluded he has no jurisdiction over the federal court's sentencing order.
Wilkinson was Broussard's parish attorney, and Parker held a deadbeat job in the administration. All three of them, along with chief administrative officer Tim Whitmer and a parish contractor, pleaded guilty to corruption charges after Broussard resigned amid scandal in 2010.
As part of their sentencings, judges ordered restitution, making Wilkinson, Parker, Broussard and Whitmer jointly responsible for $160,430 of it. The federal orders did not apportion the amount, leaving it to the four defendants as to who would pay what.
In his lawsuit in 24th Judicial District Court in Gretna, Wilkinson asserted that each defendant owes one quarter of the total, or about $40,108. He said he paid $97,427 while Parker paid only $4,600.
In response, Parker said Wilkinson was trying get a state judge, Scott Schlegel, to alter a federal court's order. That's not allowed, she argued.
Not so, said Wilkinson. He argued he was "simply seeking contribution from Ms. Parker for the virile share that the federal court ordered her to pay."
Schlegel sided with Parker on May 22, according to court records. He signed the judgment dismissing Wilkinson's suit Monday (June 11).
What happens next is not clear, although Wilkinson presumably could ask the federal court for relief. His attorney, Roland Ditta, did not return a phone call Wednesday afternoon.
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Drew Broach covers Jefferson Parish politics and Louisiana interests in Congress, plus other odds and ends, for NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune. Email: email@example.com. Facebook: Drew Broach TP. Twitter: drewbroach1. Google+: Drew Broach.