BREAKING: IRS Watchdog Recovers Thousands Of Missing Lois Lerner Emails

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Via FOX NEWS: The Treasury’s Inspector General for Tax Administration notified the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday that they have recovered thousands of Lois Lerner emails that were not previously produced to Congress, committee members told Fox News.

The inspector general recovered approximately 6,400 Lerner emails and will carefully examine them as part of the committee’s bipartisan IRS investigation.

The Hill reported that around 650 emails were from 2010 and 2011, while most of them were from 2012. The inspector general has found about 35,000 emails in all as it sought to recover emails from backup tapes.

The IRS, in a statement to the newspaper, said that it was pleased to hear the Treasury’s inspector general found the emails saying it was an “encouraging development that will help resolve remaining questions and dispel uncertainty surrounding the emails.”

The IRS also said it took the inspector general around 10 months to come up with the emails sent or received during the period affected by Lerner’s computer crash.

The agency said last year that Lerner’s computer crashed in 2011 and her emails were lost.

Lerner has been the focus of an investigation into the agency’s targeting of the Tea Party and other nonprofit groups with conservative-sounding names that applied for tax-exempt status.

Lerner was placed on leave in May 2013 and retired four months later.

“I have not done anything wrong,” Lerner said to Congress in 2013. “I have not broken any laws. I have not violated any IRS rules or regulations. And I have not provided false information to this or any other congressional committee.”

The IRS scandal broke in May 2013 when Lerner said at an American Bar Association gathering and during a follow-up conference call with reporters there was a “very quick uptick” in nonprofit applications and that the vetting process was limited to the agency’s Cincinnati office.

The extent to which the Obama administration knew about the targeting, beyond Lerner’s unit in Washington, remains unclear in part because, she says, her computer crashed and emails were lost.

Lerner attorney William Taylor recently said he and his client were “gratified but not surprised” by a decision by the U.S. Attorney’s Office not to pursue contempt of court charges against her earlier this month after she refused to testify about her role at the IRS in the targeting of conservative groups. Regarding efforts in Congress to punish her for not testifying, he said: “It is unfortunate that the majority party in the House put politics before a citizen’s constitutional rights.”

Fox News’ Mike Emanuel contributed to this report.

 

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