Scottish Sun editor David Dinsmore was fuming after lawyers warned journalists away from contacting the family of a murdered girl — the same day they gave an exclusive interview to rival paper the Daily Record.
The interview followed the charging of a man for the murder of Polish student Angelika Kluk.
Solicitors Levy and McRae, who have also acted for the Daily Record, warned all media that Aneta and Wladyslaw Kluk had been "harassed by both British and Polish press" and that such harassment breached the PCC code.
Dinsmore said: "At best this is a shocking conflict of interests by a legal firm that should know better. At worst, it is a blatant attempt to manipulate the PCC in a bid to protect an exclusive."
Angela McCracken from Levy & McRae responded by saying that her law firm acted for most of the media organisations in Scotland and was acting separately for the Kluk family.
She said the Kluk's had made clear that the Record interview was intended as the last and final one.
She said: "Any suggestion of conflict of interest is entirely untrue and potentially defamatory."
McCracken described Dinsmore's comments as "a shame" and said that Aneta Kluk was "perhaps the most distressed person I've dealt with in my professional career".