AG Ken Paxton criminal case dropped in Travis Co.

Ken Paxton. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Ken Paxton. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Prosecutors in the Travis County District Attorney’s office said Thursday they won’t continue pursuing criminal charges against Attorney General Ken Paxton.

The McKinney Republican took office earlier in January. Texans for Public Justice filed the complaint against then-State Senator Paxton with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office. Texans for Public Justice is the same group that filed a complaint against former Governor Rick Perry, which led to his indictment.

The Paxton case stems from a fine he paid in violation of the Texas Securities Act. Paxton admitted in 2014 to the ethics problem of directing his former law clients to an investment firm. He has since paid a $1,000 fine to the securities commission. State law says he should have registered as an agent to make those referrals – which he did not. He also did not include the money made from commission he received on his legislative income disclosure form to the state. State law says those violations can be a criminal act.

Attorneys in the Public Integrity Unit, housed in the Travis County DA’s Office, said Thursday there was not sufficient evidence to support criminal prosecution in Travis County.

“Our investigation did not find any additional criminal activity over which our office has venue, so we are concluding Travis County’s involvement in this matter,” said District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

In their statement prosecutors said any further investigation would have to occur outside Travis County. They referred the case to prosecutors in Collin and Dallas Counties, where Paxton practiced.

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