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Ken Paxton

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The Houston Chronicle's editorial board is offering a brief history lesson for QAnon supporters who believe in pushing conspiracy theories about Democratic leaders and lawmakers being at the center of child sex trafficking rings.

According to the board, an actual child sex ring was reportedly discovered in Texas but when it came to making sure criminals suffered consequences for their actions, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, is said to have dropped the ball.

"So where’s QAnon when you need them? We’re talking about the secretive cult of conspiracy-mongering crazies who believe that Democrats are pedophiles prone to making meals of their victims at the behest of evil Hillary Clinton and who worship Donald Trump," the editorial board wrote.

The board went on to raise questions about the irony of former President Donald Trump's support of the movement while Paxton and QAnon supporters ignore a problem in their own backyard.

"We’ve noticed that the former president has taken to wearing a Q pin on his lapel, but in the interest of truth, justice, and the American way, we ask, how can these folks stay anon when an actual elected official in the great state of Texas has, by his rank incompetence, abetted what would appear to be actual cases of child sex-trafficking?"

Recounting the disturbing situation that unfolded in Waco, Texas, the board wrote: "Last year, the AG’s office proudly announced that the Human Trafficking Unit of the Criminal Investigations Division had arrested a group of people involved in a scheme in Coryell County, a rural county west of Waco, to ship teenage girls to Dallas and other Texas cities, where they were forced to 'exchange sexual contact for crystal methamphetamine.'

"Paxton’s office dubbed its sex-trafficking investigation 'Operation Fallen Angel,'” the board added.

Now, unfortunately, the board is reporting that the investigation fell flat. "Now, thanks to a blockbuster investigative report by the Associated Press, we learn that Operation Fallen Angel has quietly fallen apart because of the AG’s bungling.

"Six of the people indicted are now free. One is being held in the Coryell County jail on other charges, while an eighth died in jail. The AP reports that Paxton’s attorneys were recently forced to drop four of the human trafficking and sexual assault cases — because they misplaced one of the victims."

The issue in Texas appears to underscore a bigger issue that was uncovered by the Associated Press.

Per the Houston Chronicle: "The AP investigation found that, as of August, the number of assistant attorneys general in the division that handles human trafficking cases was down by 40 percent. The number of assistant attorneys general in the criminal prosecutions division was down more than 25 percent from two years ago. The group that deals with financial and white-collar cases had been cut by more than half and has merged with another division."

The board concluded with a blistering assessment of Paxton's leadership and posed a compelling question to voters. "Paxton’s buffoonish adventures may read like a comic strip, but the harm he’s doing to this state is real," the board wrote. "How long will his supporters stand by and let it happen?"

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

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