The Louisiana Supreme Court has overturned a Third Circuit Court of Appeal ruling and disqualified a candidate for Abbeville City Council from running in the March 27 election. The disqualification of Ernal Broussard effectively hands the election to incumbent Francis Touchet Jr.; Broussard was Touchet’s only opponent in the District B race.

Touchet had challenged Broussard’s candidacy based on the latter’s 2005 guilty plea in federal court to a felony aiding and abetting an illegal gambling operation charge. State law bars a convicted felon from seeking elected office until 15 years after he completes his sentence. State district court Judge Marilyn Castle agreed and two weeks ago disqualified Broussard. An attorney for Broussard appealed to the Third Circuit, which overturned Castle’s ruling and green lighted Broussard’s candidacy. Touchet appeal to the state’s high court, which on Wednesday ruled in Touchet’s favor.

Read the Louisiana Supreme Court ruling here.

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