The il-liberal elite sure do make a lot of noise, when the ideology on which their position depends is threatened to even a small degree.
The hissing. The shrieking. The fainting fits.
The law in Britain — as in other jurisdictions — has been creeping for some time in the direction of trying to look at intention, rather than sticking to the letter of the law. (See for example trends in anti-avoidance legislation, under former Chancellor Philip Hammond and predecessors.)
Not a healthy development, in my opinion, and certainly not one to be welcomed by fans of the rule of law.