FBI Arrests Man Linked to Impeachment of Texas AG

Real estate developer Nate Paul is at center of Ken Paxton scandal
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 9, 2023 4:22 AM CDT
FBI Arrests Businessman Linked to Paxton Impeachment
Tony Buzbee, attorney for impeached Texas Attorney General Ken speaks during a news conference at the Republican Party of Texas headquarters in Austin, Texas, Wednesday, June 7, 2023.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The FBI on Thursday arrested a businessman at the center of the scandal that led to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's historic impeachment, a move that came amid new questions about the men’s dealings raised by financial records the Republican's lawyers made public to try to clear him of bribery allegations. Nate Paul, 36, was taken into custody by federal agents and booked into an Austin jail in the afternoon, according to Travis County Sheriff’s Office records. It was not immediately clear what charges led to his arrest, but the records showed he was being held on a federal detainer for a felony, the AP reports.

Paul's arrest follows a yearslong federal investigation into the Austin real estate developer— a probe that Paxton involved his office in, setting off a chain of events that ultimately led to his impeachment last month. FBI agents examining Paul's troubled real estate empire searched his Austin offices and palatial home in 2019. The next year, seven of Paxton’s top deputies reported the attorney general to the FBI on allegations of bribery and abusing his office to help Paul, including by hiring an outside lawyer to examine the developer's claims of wrongdoing by federal agents. The staffers alleged that Paul "was involved" in renovations in 2020 to a home the Paxtons purchased in Austin in 2018.

The allegations by Paxton's staff prompted a separate FBI investigation of the attorney general, which remains ongoing, and are central to articles of impeachment overwhelmingly approved by the GOP-led state House of Representatives. Paxton is temporarily suspended from office pending the outcome of a trial in the Texas Senate that is set to begin no later than Aug. 28. The "jury" will be the members of the 31-seat Senate; one of them, Paxton’s wife, Sen. Angela Paxton, has not said whether she will recuse herself.

(More Ken Paxton stories.)

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