FOX19 Investigates: IRS blames lost Lerner emails on computer crash

(FOX19) - The Internal Revenue service said on Friday that they have lost a large amount of emails sent to and from former IRS division head Lois Lerner.

A congressional committee requested the emails as part of an ongoing investigation into Lerner and the IRS. She is a central figure in the controversy surrounding accusations that certain IRS divisions gave extra scrutiny to Tea Party groups who sought tax exempt status.

Lerner was in charge of the Cincinnati agents who allegedly targeted the conservative groups.

The IRS blames the lost emails on Lerner's computer crashing in 2011. Investigators already have more than 24,000 of Lerner's emails from 2009 to 2011 because Lerner had copied other employees to them.

Now, an unknown number of them are gone. Technicians reportedly went to great lengths to recover them, but were not successful.

Investigators have been probing the agency for more than a year, and the IRS has said in a statement that they are committed to working with congress while taking steps to protect taxpayer information.

Lerner is currently held in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about the agency's targeting of conservative groups.

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