Advertisement

Texas AG Ken Paxton facing first-degree felony fraud charges

By Andrew V. Pestano
Texas AG Ken Paxton facing first-degree felony fraud charges
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton could be indicted on first-degree felony charges for securities fraud. Photo courtesy of Ken Paxton/Facebook

HOUSTON, July 2 (UPI) -- What began as a civil violation can now lead to life imprisonment as prosecutors are planning to charge Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton with a first-degree felony.

A Collin County grand jury will be presented with evidence to determine if Paxton should be indicted on felony fraud charges of violating state securities beginning Thursday.

Advertisement

The Republican attorney general admitted to and was fined $1,000 by the States Securities Board in May for soliciting clients for a friend's investment firm while serving as a state representative without being registered with the state, as required by law.

During the investigation on Paxton, Texas Rangers uncovered new evidence suggesting securities fraud of more than $100,000.

"We believe that there's sufficient evidence to present to a grand jury," special prosecutor Kent Schaffer said. "Whether it leads to a criminal indictment or not is up to the grand jury."

A first-degree felony conviction can result in a fine up to $10,000 and five to 99 years or life imprisonment.

Paxton began his term as attorney general in January and has been criticized for his conservative views.

Advertisement

In response to the recent Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage, the attorney general released a nonbinding legal opinion stating that the religious freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment "allow accommodation of [county clerks'] religious objections to issuing same-sex marriage licenses."

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement