The IRS is Watching You: Reports Expose IRS Partnership with the NSA and the DEA
The subject of government spying has been discussed at length recently, particularly as it relates to former National Security Agency (NSA) employee Edward Snowden and his publication of classified information.
Not surprisingly, information has recently become available which indicates that the IRS may have partnered with agencies such as the NSA and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to gather information on unsuspecting taxpayers.
The Internal Revenue Service reportedly received incriminating information on US citizens from the Drug Enforcement Agency, with the assistance of the National Security Agency, before concealing the paper trail from defendants.
Details of a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) program that provides tips to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and then advises them to “recreate the investigative trail” were published in a manual used by IRS agents for two years, Reuters revealed.
The practice of concealing the source of information has attracted the scrutiny of legal experts and is now under review by the US Justice Department.
A brief entry in the Internal Revenue Manual instructed agents of the US tax agency to omit any reference to information provided by the DEA’s Special Operations Division, especially with regard to “affidavits, court proceedings or investigative files.”
The entry was published and posted online in 2005 and 2006, and removed in early 2007. An IRS spokesman had no comment on the entry or on why it was removed from the manual, Reuters reported.
The brutal collection efforts that the IRS employs are no surprise to anyone at this point – but it is troubling to learn that the IRS may be leveraging illegal sources of information in their investigations of taxpayers.
Many Americans are uncomfortable with the idea of the government spying on Americans in any context, including national security. How much more uncomfortable should we be knowing that the IRS may be, in effect, spying on Americans in order to collect more taxes? And that they are then trying to “cover their tracks” to prevent the public from knowing about it?
The bottom line is that the IRS will do whatever they can to collect from taxpayers. That’s why it is so critical to work with a tax attorney in the event of an IRS dispute – because an attorney can force the agency to play by the rules. Please contact us today if you’d like to learn more!