Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton accused by top aides of bribery, abuse of office

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
(Image credit: Gabriella Demczuk/Getty Images)

Seven top aides to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) are accusing him of "violating federal and/or state law including prohibitions related to improper influence, abuse of office, bribery, and other potential criminal offenses," according to a letter obtained Saturday by KVUE-TV and the Austin American-Statement. The signatories include five deputy attorneys general, Paxton's top aide Jeff Mateer — who resigned Friday — and Mateer's deputy. They disclosed their allegations in a whistleblower complaint to the agency's human resources director.

The seven aides are seeking a federal investigation into Paxton's appointment of a special prosecutor to target "adversaries" of Austin real estate investor Nate Paul, a Paxton campaign donor, the Houston Chronicle reported Sunday. "Their decisions to report possible illegal activity involving their employer represents a stunning development in an agency that prizes loyalty, particularly from within Paxton's inner circle," the American-Statesman says. "It places a renewed spotlight on Paxton, who is already under indictment for alleged securities fraud."

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.