The Central Intelligence Agency's (CIA) inspector general's office has admitted it accidentally destroyed its one and only copy of a massive Senate report on torture, according to Yahoo News. The inspector general is the Agency's internal watchdog, and the admission about the report's inadvertent destruction came at the same time attorneys from the Justice Department told a federal judge copies of the report were being preserved, Yahoo reported.
Yahoo further reported the senator who oversaw the torture investigation that led to the reports creation is alarmed, despite the fact that other copies of the document exist elsewhere. The CIA has assured the senator the report was deleted as the result of a series of mistakes. The Agency said the computer file containing the report was deleted accidentally and that a disc with the report was also inadvertently destroyed. The Senate Intelligence Committee was told about the reports erasure over the summer, but the information was never made public until now, according to Yahoo.
Douglas Cox, a law professor with the City Universities of New York who specializes in tracking preserved federal documents told Yahoo: "It's breathtaking that this could have happened, especially in the inspector general's office, they’re the ones that are supposed to be providing accountability within the agency itself. It makes you wonder what was going on over there?"
For the Agency's part, Dean Boyd, the CIA's chief of public affairs told Yahoo the CIA has other copies of the report, stored away in a locked vault: "I can assure you that the CIA has retained a copy," Boyd said.
The CIA did not immediately reply to Complex's request for comment.