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Leaking of IRS tax returns is ‘an insult to all citizens,’ Citadel says as Ken Griffin subpoenas ProPublica for documents

Hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin has subpoenaed ProPublica and five of its journalists for documents related to the publication of a report detailing his secret tax return information.

Citadel’s founder requested the information last month as part of his lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service, according to a petition filed Tuesday in federal court in Miami. Griffin claims in the lawsuit that the IRS failed to establish “reasonable administrative, technical and/or physical safeguards” to protect her personal data.

ProPublica last year published tax information about several of the wealthiest American taxpayers, including Griffin. It reported that their average annual income between 2013 and 2018 was approximately $1.7 billion and that they paid an average federal tax rate of 29.2% during that time. Billionaires including Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk paid minimal or no income taxes in some years, even as their wealth grew, ProPublica reports.

A spokesperson for ProPublica said it had received a “massive” subpoena from Griffin’s lawyers, and did not know the identity of the source providing the tax information.

“We are deeply committed to protecting our sources – the lifeblood of our journalism – and the independence of our newsrooms,” the spokesperson said. “This is extremely sacred at ProPublica and will remain our priority as we address Griffin’s subpoena.”

In April, the IRS urged a judge to dismiss the lawsuit, stating that Griffin estimated that unnamed people in his organization of approximately 80,000 employees exploited security vulnerabilities to obtain his return information, while “others Excludes or minimizes all possibilities or explanations.”

Agreement ‘unlikely’

The case has been referred to a mediator, Ellen E. Feldman, and a settlement is unlikely at this time, according to Tuesday’s filing, which is a status report from attorneys for Griffin and the IRS.

Citadel spokesperson Zia Ahmed said in a statement that Griffin would press on with the fight because the leak of thousands of taxpayer records is “an insult to all citizens.”

,The IRS has a fundamental obligation to protect the privacy of Americans’ sensitive financial information,” Ahmed said. “Ken is fighting to ensure that the IRS upholds its obligations and holds the individuals and entities behind this leak accountable.”

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Griffin has a net worth of $37 billion.

Michael Bloomberg, majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News, was also among those involved in the reporting.

In addition to its series, “The Secret IRS Files,” ProPublica has reported extensively this year on his financial ties to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and Republican megadonor Harlan Crow, including luxury vacations, private jet flights, real Includes estate transactions and school tuition payments. For a family member. These reports have increased scrutiny of judges and come amid a lack of transparency and code of conduct in the court.

The case is Griffin v. Internal Revenue Service, 22-cv-24023, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida (Miami).

Source: fortune.com

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