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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has reached a settlement with prosecutors investigating him for felony securities fraud, bringing an end to a legal battle that has spanned nearly a decade. The terms of the settlement include nearly $300,000 in restitution for the victims, 100 hours of community service, and 15 hours in ethics courses. Special prosecutor Brian Wice confirmed the settlement, stating that while justice was delayed, it was not denied to the victims and the people of Texas. If Paxton fulfills his obligations, the case will be dismissed in 18 months.

The allegations against Paxton stem from his time in the Texas state legislature, where he was accused of convincing investors to fund a tech startup without disclosing that he would be paid to recruit them. He was indicted on two counts of securities fraud and one count of failing to register with state securities regulators in July 2015, just months after being sworn in as attorney general. The case has seen numerous delays over the years due to conflicts over venue and attorneys’ fees. Paxton has maintained his innocence, stating that he was the victim of political persecution.

Paxton expressed relief at finally having a resolution in the case and stated that he will never be convicted as he is not guilty. He acknowledged that dealing with the case was not easy and looks forward to putting it behind him. Special prosecutor Brian Wice believes that the terms of the settlement provide a just conclusion to the case, emphasizing that the focus should be on ensuring justice is served rather than on who wins. While the securities-fraud investigation may have concluded, Paxton still faces legal challenges, including a federal investigation related to corruption allegations.

In addition to the securities-fraud case, Paxton has faced other legal issues, including impeachment and suspension from office in the Texas House on corruption allegations. He was acquitted in a trial in the Texas Senate but remains under federal investigation for the same allegations. Former President Donald Trump has been a vocal supporter of Paxton, targeting Republicans in the Texas House who voted to impeach him. Paxton has been a staunch defender of Trump’s claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election, further complicating his legal and political standing.

Overall, the settlement of the securities-fraud case represents a significant development in Paxton’s legal troubles, providing some closure after years of conflict. While Paxton maintains his innocence and believes he has been targeted for political reasons, the resolution of this case allows him to move forward and focus on his responsibilities as Texas Attorney General. The settlement terms, if fulfilled, will result in the dismissal of the case in 18 months, marking a potential end to a longstanding legal saga.

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