LAFAYETTE — IberiaBank Corp. is accusing two former executives of a bank it purchased this year of stealing customer and business information and giving the sensitive data to JD Bank, a Jennings-based business rival formerly known as Jeff Davis Bank & Trust.
In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Lafayette, IberiaBank claims that former Teche Federal Bank vice presidents Darryl Broussard and Brayton Peltier stole thousands of customer files from Teche in April and May as the bank was going through the merger transition with IberiaBank.
IberiaBank said Broussard and Peltier committed the acts in anticipation of going to work at JD Bank. IberiaBank said Broussard and Peltier copied and stole thousands of files to give to JD Bank before destroying the information on Teche’s computer system.
IberiaBank singles out JD Bank Chief Executive Officer Boyd Boudreaux, whom they accuse of being complicit in the alleged file theft.
“Among other things, Broussard provided JD Bank’s CEO (Boyd) Boudreaux with proprietary information regarding loan portfolios handled by Broussard and at least three of the Teche lending officers that Broussard directly supervised at Teche,” IberiaBank said in an amended lawsuit filed in late August.
Boudreaux said Tuesday there is no truth in IberiaBank’s accusations that he and JD Bank tried to profit from stolen files.
“JD Bank has never received proprietary data and would not accept it if it was offered,” Boudreaux said.
Boudreaux noted that although JD Bank is mentioned in the suit, it is not a target.
“If and when it becomes necessary, we will defend ourselves vigorously,” Boudreaux said.
In the lawsuit, IberiaBank said Broussard, who was a senior vice president and chief lending officer at Teche, took more than 4,000 confidential files before deleting them. It says Peltier, a former Teche credit analyst and vice president, stole 8,000 files to give to JD Bank before deleting the information from Teche computers.
The lawsuit claims Broussard and Peltier broke state and federal banking laws by stealing Teche information that by that time had become the property of IberiaBank.
Peltier’s attorney, Allan Durand, said Tuesday that Peltier was a low-level employee who didn’t mean to do anything wrong. Durand said Peltier did remove some data from his Teche-provided computer, but it was merely blank banking forms that didn’t contain sensitive data. Durand said Peltier downloaded the data onto a thumb drive, then returned the files to IberiaBank officials.
“Hopefully at some point in the near future IberiaBank will recognize it for the simple mistake in judgment that it was,” Durand said. He added that Peltier has learned from the experience.
A call seeking comment from Broussard’s attorney was not returned Tuesday.
IberiaBank spokeswoman Beth Ardoin earlier this month said the bank would have no comment on the lawsuit. Ardoin did not return another request for comment left with her office Tuesday.
IberiaBank also asks the court to force Broussard to return $391,946 he received from IberiaBank after its merger with Teche was completed.
Broussard on Sept. 15 countersued IberiaBank, claiming bank officials are trying to get out of paying an additional $250,000 owed to him because of the successful merger with Teche. The money, Broussard said in court papers, was called a “success bonus” that was part of his employment agreement with IberiaBank.
“Instead, on July 3, 2014, only three days prior to its deadline to pay the Success Bonus, IberiaBank formally terminated (Broussard) by cold, written correspondence,” the countersuit states.
IberiaBank is now the largest Louisiana-based bank, growing through acquisitions in Louisiana and other Southern states. Besides the Teche purchase, IberiaBank this year also has bought banks in Tennessee and Texas.