Paxton securities fraud trial set for April 15

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is slated to go to trial April 15 on securities fraud charges after being delayed for years. 

State District Judge Andrea Beall scheduled the trial date during a hearing for Paxton on Monday, according to The Texas Tribune. While Paxton attended the hearing, the news outlet said he did not speak.

Paxton was indicted on two felony counts of securities fraud eight years ago, but the case has been continually delayed over various disputes, including where the trial should be held. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled in June that the trial will remain in Houston, clearing an obstacle for many of the pretrial disputes.

Paxton’s legal team suggested it was optimistic ahead of the trial date. 

“I think this will be a fair trial. We have a fair judge,” defense attorney Philip Hilder told reporters, according to KXAN. “This is about the money for the special prosecutors. It’s not about justice.”

The new trial date comes on the heels Paxton’s impeachment trial last month, where he faced accusations of misusing his office to benefit a real estate developer, Nate Paul, his friend and campaign donor.

A jury of state senators voted to acquit him on all 16 articles of impeachment. The decision to acquit came after eight days of witness testimony and one day of closing arguments.

Paxton has also been under investigation by the FBI since October 2020 over allegations of bribery and abuse of office in an effort to help a real estate developer and wealthy donor, The Associated Press reported at the time.

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