PORT ALLEN, La. (AP) — Authorities say a 37-year-old Port Allen man who sought to hire a hit man to kill a Pointe Coupee couple over a soured business deal is behind bars after the would-be hit man went to police and turned informant.

The Advocate reports Tommy Joe Gioele was booked into West Baton Rouge Parish Jail Tuesday on two counts of solicitation of murder for his alleged attempt to have Manuel A. Persica and his wife Camellia killed inside their Pointe Coupee home.

Court records show Gioele and Persica have been locked in a bitter business feud dating back to a 2008 lawsuit filed by Gioele.

Gioele is being held on a $750,000 bond.

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