News ID: 116864
Published: 0622 GMT April 28, 2015

UK Court of Appeal orders full disclosure of MPs' expenses claims

UK Court of Appeal orders full disclosure of MPs' expenses claims

The UK Court of Appeal has ordered a body overseeing parliamentarians’ expenses to publish full receipts and invoices related to claims.

The ruling comes in response to an argument by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) that a summary of the details on politicians’ claims was enough. In his ruling, however, Lord Justice Richards said that copies of the original documents should be released.

Ipsa was set up in 2009 to restore the British public faith in the political system after the expenses scandal. The case on expenses details was filed by the Telegraph newspaper group in 2010 after one of its staff, Ben Leapman, wanted to see three specific receipts submitted by lawmakers to support expenses claims.

Leapman, who has was later convicted for downloading child sex abuse images and jailed for rape, had appealed to the Information Commissioner after his Freedom of Information request was denied.

The commissioner decided in Leapman’s favor saying "the recorded information contained within the receipts or invoices can inform the observer about the legitimacy of the expenses claims."

Ipsa then appealed in the courts, where it has now lost its case against the Telegraph group. The body can now appeal to the Supreme Court but an Ipsa spokesman following the ruling said: "We need to study the judgment carefully”.

 SKL/SKL

   
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