- The Washington Times - Friday, May 17, 2013

Add to the list of IRS targets: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

PETA said it’s been targeted, too. Politico reported that Jeffrey Kerr, the general counsel for the animal rights group, sent a letter on Thursday to the Treasury Department alleging that PETA was unfairly audited on three separate occasions: Between 1990 and 1992, from 2003 to 2005 and in 2009.

It’s not just conservative groups, Mr. Kerr wrote in his letter, Politico reported.

“PETA’s harassment by the IRS includes the 20-month audit in 2003 to 2005 and another in 2009, both of which resulted from what the IRS agents admitted — and we have verified from Freedom of Information Act materials — were politically motivated attacks and pressures by members of Congress who were doing the bidding of the meat, dairy, experimentation, tobacco and other industries whose animal-abusing practices PETA opposes,” he wrote, Politico reported.

IRS agents didn’t find anything of concern with PETA following all three audits, Mr. Kerr said, Politico reported. But the group was seriously distracted from its core mission for a period of years.

“[PETA] endured an unconscionable diversion of charity resources to fend off these attacks on its tax-exempt status, which were reminiscent of the Nixon years and tactics more commonly attributed to totalitarian regimes,” Mr. Kerr said, in his letter reported by Politico.

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