In Year of Banner Settlements, IRS-CI Saw Drop in Criminal Cases Due to Budget Woes

By Kira Zalan

The Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation Division initiated 19 percent fewer investigations and recommended nearly 900 fewer prosecutions in fiscal year 2014 than in the previous year, the agency said in a report Tuesday. The chief of IRS-CI, Richard Weber, attributed the decline to a reduction in the agency's annual budget over the past several years, which has led to a hiring freeze. With the loss through retirement of up to 160 agents annually, the division expects to have 2,302 special agents by the end of fiscal year 2015, or 1061 fewer than its high of 3,363 in 1995 and 437...