The mysterious case of the leaked and falsified documents outlining a bid for South African Breweries by Interbrew has entered its next stage.
 
Yesterday, the media groups who have been ordered to hand over the papers, entered the UK Court of Appeal to defend their rights to protect their sources from both the Financial Services Authority and the aggrieved brewers.

Five UK papers are appealing against a high court order to hand over to Interbrew, the Belgian brewer, allegedly falsified documents outlining its possible bid for South African Breweries.
 
They are also expected to contest a request by the Financial Services Authority, which is investigating the leak, to voluntarily disclose the documents.
 
If the regulator decides to enforce this request, it could provide the first legal test of the formidable powers it was given on December 1 to require disclosure in suspected market abuse cases.

The FSA has so far not indicated how far it will push its request for the documents, but the UK high court ruled in December that the "exceptional circumstances" of the case justified the erosion of journalistic privilege to protect sources.
The case continues.