- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The House’s top investigator sent a letter Wednesday demanding answers from an IRS lawyer in the agency’s Office of Professional Responsibility who is facing disbarment and whom a whistleblower has accused of losing IRS files on a party bus to Atlantic City.

House oversight committee Chairman Darrell Issa requested that the IRS lawyer, Takisha McGee, sit down with his investigators for an interview to probe the accusations.

“These allegations not only involve serious violations of federal law, but they reflect poorly upon the IRS’s ethical standards of conduct,” the California Republican wrote in his letter.

Mr. Issa’s letter highlighted the suspension of Ms. McGee’s law license in March, and also detailed the whistleblower’s accusation that she left an investigative case file on the bus to Atlantic City.

When asked about the file by agents from the inspector general’s office, Ms. McGee “allegedly denied having possession of the case file” but later remarked to coworkers that even if investigators traced it to her, she would escape discipline because her supervisor, OPR Director Karen Hawkins, would protect her.

“Your misconduct is further evidence that the IRS is a broken agency in need of serious reform,” Mr. Issa wrote.

“This type of misconduct in the IRS‘ ethics office provides further context for the IRS culture that enabled the exempt organizations division to implement a concerted and sustained effort to target tax exempt applicants based on their political beliefs.”

Messages to Ms. McGee, Ms. Hawkins and an IRS spokesman were not immediately returned Wednesday evening.

Ms. McGee has been the subject of articles in The Washington Times detailing her role as a top attorney inside an IRS office charged with suspending and disbarring tax professions.

In a phone interview last week, Ms. McGee blamed inexperience and personal problems for her legal problems, and said she planned to fight disbarment concerning her distributing settlement money in a personal-injury case.

She said she made a “one time mistake.”

The D.C. Court of Appeals board on professional responsibility issued a report in December concluding that there was “clear and convincing” evidence Ms. McGee misappropriated client settlements funds and provided false testimony about her work in the case before she joined the IRS in 2008.

While records show she was suspended from practicing law in March pending the outcome of the disbarment proceeding, IRS officials sent her days later to lecture the tax section of the Florida bar to discuss her office’s work.

Ms. McGee said she’s kept her supervisors notified about the disbarment recommendation.

At the same time Ms. McGee was lecturing in Florida, Ms. Hawkins was giving a speech at New York University, where she detailed how her office takes action against attorneys whose licenses were suspended in state bar proceedings.

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