“…The shadow foreign minister Helen Goodman said the investigations had exposed the inadequacy of a system whereby beneficial ownership data was only accessible to regulators.
The foreign minister Alan Duncan, however, said the government would only pressure the territories to adopt new transparency measures when they became a global standard, and insisted that an EU commitment to introduce public registers did not meet that threshold.
Criticism was directed at Appleby, the offshore law firm at the heart of the Paradise Papers, for bringing legal action against the Guardian and the BBC over their reporting.
The shadow Treasury minister Anneliese Dodds criticised the government for failing to “defend publicly the journalists who were singled out by Appleby” and asked it to affirm that the reports were in the public interest.
Appleby has said a hacker had stolen its files and argued that none of the journalistic disclosures were in the public interest. It has demanded damages and asked the court to permanently ban both media organisations from using its leaked files to investigate its conduct or that of its clients.
Earlier this month the European parliament announced an inquiry into financial crime, tax evasion and tax avoidance, including measures to circumvent VAT on private jets facilitated by Appleby.”