Ethics Panel Studies Donors Financing Texas AG's Defense

The Texas Ethics Commission is circulating a draft opinion saying Attorney General Ken Paxton could use out-of-state donors to finance his defense in a felony securities fraud case.

The Houston Chronicle reports the draft opinion was disclosed ahead of a Monday commission meeting. It says a state employee could accept a donor's help "if the donor's only connection with the jurisdiction of the public servant ... is the act of giving the benefit."

Paxton is accused of deceiving wealthy investors by helping convince them to pump more than $100,000 into a tech startup without revealing that he was being paid by the company, Servergy Inc.

The alleged fraud occurred while he was serving in the Texas Legislature.

Paxton can't use existing campaign funds to finance his defense.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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