Government Law

White House lawyer will testify about lost IRS emails

A lawyer who worked as counsel to the Internal Revenue Service in 2013 will testify at a House hearing Tuesday on lost IRS emails, the White House says in a letter to the chairman of a House Committee.

The lawyer, Jennifer O’Connor, oversaw document collection in response to a probe into IRS targeting of conservative groups, the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.) reports. She is now a White House lawyer.

O’Connor will testify before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, chaired by U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa, R.-Calif., who subpoenaed O’Connor.

In testimony on Monday, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said the Treasury inspector general is investigating the lost emails.

The IRS has said forensic experts tried in 2011 to recover lost documents from a crashed computer of the IRS official at the center of the controversy, Lois Lerner, but were unable to do so.

Koskinen said the IRS backed up emails on computer tapes, but those tapes were reused every six months. The crashed hard drive was recycled. The IRS has produced 24,000 emails in which Lerner copied other employees, however.

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