IRS Consultant Pleads Guilty To Leaking Trump’s Tax Returns

Former IRS contractor Charles Edward Littlejohn has pleaded guilty to stealing and leaking confidential tax data belonging to former President Donald Trump and thousands of other wealthy people.

Littlejohn admitted to disclosing tax information to two large-scale media networks, leading to the publication of such confidential information with the public.

It may sound like small potatoes to those who feel the 1% deserve this kind of exposure, but the breach at the IRS has raised red flags about the security of American taxpayer data. We should be worried about the potential implications for both public figures like Trump and ourselves.

While Trump was Littlejohn’s most famed victim, a ProPublica report on the leaked data also shared information on big names like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk.

Littlejohn confessed to the “unauthorized disclosure of tax return information.” The felony charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, although prosecutors estimate that Littlejohn will likely face eight to 14 months behind bars.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri shared, “The unauthorized theft and disclosure of tax return information by government employees or contractors is a serious breach of the public’s trust.”

Littlejohn’s actions could have a lasting impact on American citizens. He not only jeopardized the privacy and security of Americans’ financial information. But he highlighted risks that will now serve to undermine public trust in the IRS and the security of the tax system as a whole.

This comes at a time when U.S. citizens are already struggling with feelings of misplaced trust in their government institutions. Americans are concerned about the potential political motivations behind Littlejohn’s actions, and rightfully so.

Littlejohn’s guilty plea marks a critical step in the legal process, but the sentencing will determine the severity of his punishment. Many Americans don’t feel the maximum sentence would be harsh enough. Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, has called for the harshest penalty, arguing that the leak may have influenced the 2020 election and compromised Trump’s candidacy. Sentencing is scheduled for January 29.