A Republican tax attorney has filed a lawsuit against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas over his taxes, Newsweek reports.
John Anthony Castro is accusing Thomas of violating the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act (VFATA) by failing to file his income taxes.
“Clarence Thomas knowingly presented or caused to be presented a false and fraudulent claim (i.e., his 2005 Virginia State Income Tax Return) to the Virginia Department of Taxation on or about April 15, 2016, that failed to report income from discharge of indebtedness,” the complaint says, per Newsweek.
Questions were raised about Thomas’ tax compliance following the New York Times and the Senate Finance Committee revealing that Thomas never repaid a “substantial portion” of the $267,230 loan from businessman Anthony Welters in 1999 and forgiven in 2008.
It was unclear whether Thomas had reported the loan forgiveness on his tax returns and paid all taxes he owed.
“Under Section 108 of the Internal Revenue Code, he would have had a legal obligation to report [the loan] as taxable income and the tax alone would have been, probably $40,000 or $50,000. That’s a third of his annual salary,” Castro told Newsweek. “And that’s when I was like, ‘There’s no way he reported that because that’d be financially disastrous for him.'”
Castro says he mailed the complaint to a Virginia court Friday and expects them to take up to two business days to file it.
VFATA, the act under which Castro is suing Thomas, allows anyone in the country to file a complaint against a Virginia resident who “knowingly makes, uses, or causes to be made or used, a false record or statement material to an obligation to pay or transmit money or property to the Commonwealth or knowingly conceals or knowingly and improperly avoids or decreases an obligation to pay or transmit money or property to the Commonwealth.”
The act says civil action may not be brought “more than six years after the date on which the violation is committed or more than three years after the date when facts material to the right of action are known.” In that case, a civil action cannot be brought “no more than ten years after the date on which the violation is committed.”
Thomas is not the only conservative being sued by Castro. According to Newsweek, he has also filed lawsuits in several states to remove Donald Trump from the ballot.
“I’m a very, very stubbornly principled person and if I feel that somebody broke the law, I’m going to hold them accountable,” he said. “Just like Trump for January 6 and Clarence Thomas for this sham loan.”