Cleta Mitchell represents True the Vote, one of the groups illegally targeted by the IRS in the scandals that have exposed the agency as a partisan operation. True the Vote’s Catherine Engelbrecht has been harassed by federal law enforcement authorities representing three different federal agencies.
The recent disclosure of the “loss” of thousands of emails subject to production by the IRS in the litigation was the subject of Cleta’s letter to the attorneys representing the IRS and the individual IRS defendants including Lois Lerner; Cleta sought a response to the questions she posed in the letter with a deadline that expired last week. We posted Cleta’s letter verbatim here.
Last night Cleta filed a motion asking the Court to order limited discovery for the purpose of investigating the “lost” emails at the IRS. Along with a set of the motion papers, Cleta has sent us the following message by way of an update. Cleta writes:
We have been trying to get counsel for ALL of these defendants – from the IRS to the individuals from the IRS responsible for the targeting scandal – to answer questions regarding what steps they have taken to preserve evidence in this case while we are awaiting the judge’s rulings on THEIR motions to dismiss. The government attorneys refuse even to call the missing emails “evidence” – arguing that until the judge rules on the motions, the documents and emails in the possession of the Defendants (or lost by the Defendants) do not even constitute “evidence.”
So after sending letters, meeting and conferring, and getting nowhere, we filed this motion late last night – and by mid-morning the judge’s clerk was in contact with us asking if a hearing date of July 11 was agreeable to the parties. Judge Walton just issued the order scheduling the hearing for July 11 at 11 am EDT.
We plan to argue to the Court that unless the Court takes immediate steps to require Defendants to disclose what they have done to preserve evidence in the case, what they have done to try to recover any “lost” evidence, and to allow us access for purposes of conducting our own forensic examinations and investigation, that evidence will continue to be lost, spoiled or destroyed. We are pleased that Judge Walton has moved quickly to address these concerns and we look forward to the hearing next week.