Ex-IRS official Lois Lerner used a second personal email account under the name of "Toby Miles" to conduct official business during the time of the conservative group targeting scandal.
The Washington Times reported that the IRS admitted Monday in a court filing that Lerner used not one but two personal email accounts in addition to her official IRS email during her time heading the government agency’s Exempt Organizations Unit.
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According to IRS lawyer Geoffrey J. Klimas, the agency discovered the email account when it was assembling documents to turn over to Judicial Watch, the public interest law group that filed an open-records lawsuit to gain access to emails sent by Lerner during the time she targeted conservative groups seeking tax exempt status.
"In addition to emails to or from an email account denominated ‘Lois G. Lerner’ or ‘Lois Home,’ some emails responsive to Judicial Watch’s request may have been sent to or received from a personal email account denominated ‘Toby Miles,’" Klimas explained to District Judge Emmet Sullivan Monday.
While it remains unclear who is "Toby Miles"–Lerner is married to a Michael Miles–the IRS said that it has concluded that the address represents "a personal email account used by Lerner."
"It is simply astonishing that years after this scandal erupted we are learning about an account Lois Lerner used that evidently hadn’t been searched," Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said, accusing the IRS of concealing information from Lerner that could inform the targeting controversy.
Klimas insisted Monday that the IRS had previously hinted Lerner had possibly used additional personal email accounts. The lawyer explained that the government agency will review prior document releases to Judicial Watch in light of the new information and will provide an update at the end of the month.
According to Fox News, the "Toby Miles" address was brought up in a 2014 House Ways and Means Committee criminal referral, but at the time the IRS dismissed it as an account linked to Lerner’s husband.
The news of Lerner’s second personal email account comes as former secretary of state Hillary Clinton undergoes scrutiny for her exclusive use of a private email system during her time working in the Obama administration.
"This is just another example from the Obama administration of the–to use an old Nixonian phrase–modified limited hangout," said Litton of the latest Lerner discovery.
A bipartisan Senate Finance Committee report released earlier this month concluded that Lerner "failed to adequately manage" members of her staff processing the applications from conservative groups seeking tax exempt status for two years beginning in 2010.
As a result of the "delinquent" handling of such applications, only one conservative advocacy group was granted tax-exempt status in a three-year period.