Justice Dept.: No criminal charges for ex-IRS official
Neither Lois Lerner nor any other IRS official will face criminal charges in the political controversy over the processing of applications for tax-exempt status, the Justice Department announced Friday.
The decision closes a two-year investigation into accusations that stoked outrage among Republicans in Congress, who alleged bias in the tax agency’s treatment of conservative and tea party groups.
In a letter notifying members of Congress of its decision, the Justice Department said that while its investigators had found “mismanagement, poor judgment and institutional inertia,” they found no evidence that any IRS employee had targeted a political group based on its viewpoints or had obstructed justice.
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A firestorm erupted more than two years ago with the release of an inspector general’s audit that said IRS agents had improperly singled out tea party and other conservative groups for extra scrutiny during the 2010 and 2012 elections. The disclosure set off investigations by the Justice Department and multiple congressional committees, and Republicans routinely pressed FBI and Justice Department officials for updates on the probe – as recently as Thursday – during their visits to Capitol Hill.
▪ Columbia-based South State Corp. on Friday reported net income up 30 percent to $25.1 million The bank had earnings of $1.04 per share. The results beat Wall Street expectations of $1.09 per share. Shares rose 4 percent to $78.39 on Friday.
▪ Mark Rochester, a former executive with The Associated Press, has been named the new editor for The Herald of Rock Hill. Rochester, who begins work at The Herald on Nov. 16, succeeds Paul Osmundson, who rejoined The State newspaper of Columbia in August. The 51-year-old Rochester had been deputy managing editor at The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, overseeing digital strategy and content, and investigations.
From Wire Reports