MPs expenses revealed after two year battle

A former Labour minister claimed more than £16,000 for mileage and a Conservative backbencher ran up a bill of almost £6,000 on taxis, as MPs' travel claims reached £5m. The first breakdown of Westminster's travel expenses, released under the Freedom of Information Act, has revealed wide discrepancies between claims.

Norman Baker, the Liberal Democrat MP for Lewes in East Sussex, who obtained the figures, said he hoped that publishing the information who would dissuade them from extravagance in future: "I hope it will also make MPs think twice about the environmental impact of their journeys and how it could be lessened. The most important thing is that MPs must be accountable for what they spend. This is a victory for accountability and secondly, this is a victory for Freedom of Information."

Mr Baker first submitted his FOI request two years ago. The Information Tribunal rejected two appeals by Commons authorities which said publication would breach data protection rules.

MPs' travel expenses revealed after two-year battle for secrecy (The Independent, 14 February 2007)

Cameron's £1,000 bill for taxis hits green credentials (The Scotsman, 14 February 2007)