It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
The IRS erased a hard drive belonging to a former top employee involved in the agency’s controversial, taxpayer-funded hiring of elite trial law firm Quinn Emanuel.
Although there was a court preservation order on all documents related to the IRS hiring of the outside firm, the hard drive was erased anyway. The order was borne of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request submitted by Microsoft.
The IRS informed the U.S. Department of Justice last month that it did not wipe the hard drive until April of last year, after the hold was in place, according to a Friday filing by the U.S. Department of Justice in a Washington federal court. The hard drive belonged to Samuel Maruca, former director of transfer pricing operations at the IRS Large Business and International Division.
Even though the white shoe law firm has zero experience handling sensitive tax data, taxpayers have been footing bills of over $1,000 per hour for its services.
The deleted hard drive belonged to the agency’s former director of transfer pricing operations at the IRS Large Business and International Division, likely a key employee involved in the controversy. It is not known if there is any way to recover documents belonging to the employee.
Despite its complete inexperience handling audits or taxpayer data, Quinn Emanuel was hired under an initial $2.2 million contract.
This is not the first time the agency has failed to preserve key information. The IRS also “accidentally” destroyed the hard drive belonging to Lois Lerner during investigations into the targeting of conservative groups. As many as 24,000 emails were lost forever when 422 backup tapes were wiped clean despite an agency-wide preservation order and congressional subpoena.
In the Lerner case, the IRS failed to take simple steps to ensure compliance with the order, according to a report by the House Oversight Committee.
Now, it appears that important information has once again disappeared because of IRS corruption, incompetence, or both.