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Prosecutor: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton Violated Public Records Law

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Prosecutor: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton Violated Public Records Law

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AUSTIN, Texas — A district attorney says Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton violated state public records laws by withholding or failing to preserve his communications relating to his appearance at a rally pro-Donald Trump that preceded the deadly riot in the US Capitol last year.

The Austin-based Travis County District Attorney’s Office told the Republican attorney general in a letter Thursday that it has four days to remedy the issue or face legal action. Paxton’s office did not return a message seeking comment on the letter Friday.

Paxton and his wife, State Senator Angela Paxton, appeared at the January 6, 2021 event in Washington, D.C. where the Attorney General gave a speech touting his failed legal efforts to undo Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election.

Several news agencies requested Paxton’s communications at this time under Texas public information law. Last March, six news outlets jointly published an article raising questions about whether Paxton was breaking open records laws.

Earlier this month, the top editors of five Texas newspapers – the Austin American-Statesman, the Dallas Morning News, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News – filed a complaint asking the district attorney to investigate the alleged violations.

Anyone who believes that a public body is withholding information in violation of the Public Information Act can file a complaint with the local prosecutor.

Paxton faces several GOP challengers in his bid for re-election this year.

Last fall, eight of Paxton’s top aides charged him with bribery, abuse of power and other crimes while serving another supporter, an Austin real estate developer who employs a woman with whom the prosecutor General allegedly had an extramarital affair. The FBI is investigating these allegations.

The Attorney General has also spent most of his time in office under a separate indictment. He pleaded not guilty in 2015 to three counts of state title fraud, but has yet to stand trial.

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Prosecutor: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton Violated Public Records Law

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