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Government settles with Tripp for $595,000

Gives her outstanding performance evaluations

Linda Tripp, left, and Monica Lewinsky
Linda Tripp, left, and Monica Lewinsky

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• Read the setttlement agreement (FindLaw, PDF)external link

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The federal government Monday announced it is paying Linda Tripp and her attorneys $595,000 dollars to settle allegations the Defense Department violated her privacy rights when confidential information about her was disclosed during the unfolding Monica Lewinsky scandal.

In addition, the government agreed to retroactively give Tripp three annual outstanding performance evaluations for her work at the Defense Department, increasing the value of her retirement.

Tripp sued the government because, her attorney said, Pentagon officials leaked information from the government background investigation of Tripp, which included the fact that that she had been arrested when she was 19 years old.

Tripp became widely known as the woman who taped conversations with Lewinsky to document the intern's secret relationship with then-President Bill Clinton.

Tripp Monday issued a written statement through her attorneys, saying, "The government should never be permitted to use Privacy Act protected information to discredit political opponents. This is a long-awaited first step toward holding the government accountable. ...

"Today the Department of Defense has accepted liability. My ultimate goal is to ensure that any sitting president be required by law to honor the Privacy Act regardless of political motive," Tripp said.

The Justice Department, which represented the government in the case, had no comment.

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