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WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) — A contractor for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) pled guilty to “disclosing tax return information without authorization.”

The contractor in question improperly accessed President Donald Trump’s tax returns and then shared them with media outlets.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that Charles Littlejohn “broke federal law and betrayed the public’s trust.” Its news release did not specifically name Trump, but other media outlets confirm it was the former president’s returns. Littlejohn worked for government contractor Booz Allen Hamilton.

“In every case, the Department of Justice is committed to following the facts wherever they lead and holding accountable those who violate our laws,” Attorney General Merrick Garland stated.

In addition to accessing Trump’s tax returns through a database, Littlejohn also improperly accessed thousands of returns of wealthy Americans.

The DOJ announced:

In July and August 2020, Littlejohn separately stole tax return information for thousands of the nation’s wealthiest individuals. Littlejohn was again able to evade IRS detection. In November 2020, Littlejohn disclosed this tax return information to News Organization 2, which published over 50 articles using the stolen data. Littlejohn then obstructed the forthcoming investigation into his conduct by deleting and destroying evidence of his disclosures.

Littlejohn pleaded guilty to unauthorized disclosure of tax return and return information. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 29, 2024, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

However, the plea deal will likely reduce the time he spends in prison. “Though facing a maximum of five years, his plea deal calls for an estimated range of eight to 14 months when he is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 29,” RealClearInvestigations reported.

Littlejohn’s theft included tax returns on Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos. That information was then reportedly sent to ProPublica, a liberal news outlet. ProPublica acknowledged receiving the records but said it does not know the identity of its source.

Garland’s statement on the DOJ “holding accountable those who violate our laws” comes at a time his department continues to face scrutiny for targeting conservative Americans, including conducting armed raids on the homes of pro-life dads, asking for a light sentence for a gender-confused vandal who attacked a Catholic church, and issuing a memo that labeled Latin Mass Catholics as potential extremist threats.

The DOJ under Garland also issued a memo ordering law enforcement to closely surveil parents and other activists who spoke out against COVID restrictions in schools as well as pornographic books in school libraries and racialized content in the classroom.

Trump’s attorney Alina Habba said she believes other individuals were involved in the leak. “What Mr. Littlejohn did, I do not believe he did alone. There is no way some 30-some-year old individual got the president’s tax returns out of a vault at the IRS.”

“Somebody who worked for Booz Allen Hamilton, who obviously hired CIA agents, assets … got the president’s returns and released his alone … right before an election. That is election interference,” Habba said.

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