Texas attorney general to be booked on fraud charges: media reports

Reuters News
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Posted: Aug 03, 2015 10:43 AM

By Jon Herskovitz

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Tea Party Republican, is expected to turn himself in as early as Monday for booking on three charges involving suspected securities fraud, Texas media reported.

Paxton will appear for processing and pose for a mug shot in Collin County, near Dallas. The contents of a sealed three-count indictment will also be released, the Dallas Morning News and others reported.

Neither Paxton nor the special prosecutors appointed to the case have commented on the reported indictment. Paxton took his post earlier this year as the state's top law-enforcement official, pledging a fight against abortion, same-sex marriage and the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

A grand jury in July heard evidence presented by the prosecutors and the Texas Rangers. It then returned the indictment that includes first-degree felony charges, which can bring up to 99 years in prison.

Paxton drew national attention when he said county clerks in Texas who object to gay marriage on religious grounds can refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June requiring states to allow same-sex marriage.

When he was in the state legislature, Paxton was hired to seek clients by an investment firm called Mowery Capital Management, which is facing allegations from the State Securities Board of defrauding investors.

The board found in May 2014 that Paxton was not properly registered as an investment adviser in his work with the firm. It reprimanded him and fined him $1,000.

Paxton's name also appears in a federal court document as a major investor in a Dallas-area firm in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation.Court documents in the federal investigation of the technology firm called Servergy do not make any allegations of misconduct by Paxton or draw links to the investigation into securities fraud in Texas.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)