"Do not go hastily to court;
For what will you do in the end,
When your neighbor has put you to shame?"
[Author's Note: Byron Cook wore out every shred of benefit of the doubt he ever had with this website a long, long, long time ago. We remain firmly, if informally, convinced that Cook has been lying this entire time. That being said, taking him at his word (in this one instance) is a really fun thought experiment.]
The indefatigable Jon Cassidy just uncovered something new in the fiasco otherwise known as the Paxton prosecution:
The criminal case against Attorney General Ken Paxton is based on an assumption, according to investigatory records of the Texas Rangers.Read the whole thing here.
It’s an assumption that state Rep. Byron Cook (R–Corsicana) says he made about Paxton before investing $300,000 in a company called Servergy. Three of his friends say they made the same assumption, according to files obtained by Watchdog.org.
These four friends – Cook, Joel Hochberg, Bill Sandford, and Bob Griggs – have been investing together for decades. Cook and Sandford started going in on deals together 30 years ago; Hochberg joined them 20 years ago.
Although deception is a key element in any fraud case, none of the four claimed Paxton misled them – about getting Servergy stock, about putting his own money into the company, or anything else.
Rather, “Jacobson said the four investors assumed Paxton was also investing in Servergy based on past investments with Paxton,” Ranger Stacy McNeal wrote.
However, it was Cook who turned Hochberg, Sandford, and Griggs onto the Servergy opportunity, according to the records. It was Servergy CEO Bill Mapp who gave the presentation on the investment, not Paxton.
Sandford and Griggs, by their own admission, never even talked to Paxton about Servergy.
Their discussions about whether to invest were with Cook, who “was committed to investing in Servergy,” according to Sandford. Nobody claims that what Paxton was doing with his money even entered into the discussion.
Still, even with Cook and Hochberg, those special prosecutors are going to have earn the $1 million-plus they’re making by persuading a jury to embrace a novel theory of fraud: Paxton should go to prison not for anything untrue he said or implied, but for an incorrect thought by others about what he was doing with his own money, a pure assumption, which existed only in somebody else’s head.
Cook intends to avoid answering questions under oath until after Paxton’s trial this spring is over. His attorneys have filed for a legislative continuance, a perk lawmakers enjoy that allows them to automatically block all action on litigation they’re involved in for six months or more when the Legislature is in session.
[Author's Note: Emphasis added.]
Bottom Line:Even if he were telling the truth (which he isn't) Byron Cook is, at best, the most incompetent investor in the history of investing....