Page last updated at 11:50 GMT, Saturday, 31 October 2009

BBC plans MPs' expenses row film

MPs' expenses headlines
Heather Brooke spent years battling to ensure MPs' were held to account

The saga to uncover the truth about MPs' expenses claims is to be made into a "humorous drama" for BBC Four.

The one-off film follows the campaign of US journalist Heather Brooke to disclose MPs' personal spending under the Freedom of Information Act.

The case went to the High Court but a whistleblower then sold the details to the Daily Telegraph.

The production will be directed by Our Friends in the North's Simon Cellan-Jones.

The writer will be Tony Saint, who was also behind Margaret Thatcher: The Long Walk to Finchley and Micro Men.

Richard Kein, controller of BBC Four said: "This drama seeks to understand the story behind a serious subject by way of a witty interpretation of events.

"To that end I am delighted that Tony Saint is bringing his dry and acerbic sense of humour to the piece."

Heather Brooke, an American living in London, was writing a book on the Freedom of Information Act.

In 2004 she approached the House of Commons asking about MPs' expenses but was rebuffed.

She doubled her efforts but the establishment closed ranks and blocked her attempts to see the information.

Heather took her case to the High Court and won and then began scanning the receipts.

However, the release of these documents was then delayed, leading to a whistleblower selling them to the Daily Telegraph, denying Ms Brooke the news scoop of the decade.

The drama is scheduled to be ready for transmission in early 2010.

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