WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department watchdog says fired FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe misled investigators over his role in a news media disclosure.

The finding is contained in an inspector general report obtained Friday by The Associated Press.

The inspector general's finding led FBI disciplinary officials to recommend that the Justice Department fire McCabe. Attorney General Jeff Sessions dismissed him last month two days before his scheduled retirement for what he described as a lack of candor.

McCabe has disputed that assessment, and issued a point-by-point rebuttal on Friday. He says that when he believed his answers to the inspector general were misunderstood, he went back and tried to correct them. His lawyer says the inspector general unfairly tried to conclude its work before McCabe could retire.