Bankrupt Cities

Former Mayor of Bankrupt R.I. City Pleads Guilty to Corruption Charges

Admits to accepting gifts in exchange for handing out lucrative contracts


The longtime mayor of struggling Central Falls resigned and has agreed to plead guilty to a federal corruption charge of accepting gifts in exchange for handing out a lucrative contract to board up city houses, according to papers filed Wednesday.

Now-former Mayor Charles Moreau and his friend, businessman Michael Bouthillette, acknowledge in a plea agreement that Bouthillette paid at least in part for a furnace installed at Moreau's former Central Falls home and for renovations at a home Moreau owned in Lincoln. The total value is estimated at $5,000 to $10,000.

In exchange, Moreau used his emergency powers to order homes that were foreclosed be boarded up by Bouthillette's business.