A Spanish judge has decided to keep the parents of a British child with a brain tumor in custody for a maximum of 72 hours while he investigates the circumstances surrounding their decision to take him out of a UK hospital without medical consent and flee with him to Spain.
On Monday morning, Judge Ismael Moreno of the National High Court took statements from Brett and Naghemeh King, the parents of Ashya King, a five-year-old whom they removed from hospital in Southampton last week without approval from doctors.
The family were located in a small hotel in Vélez-Málaga in southern Spain on Saturday night, and both parents were placed under arrest following the European warrant issued by Interpol.
The judge will now determine Ashya’s state of health. The youngster is under medical care at a specialized cancer unit at a Málaga children’s hospital. Hospital sources said Monday morning that he was in a stable condition and his life was not in danger.
No charges have been pressed against them in Spain, and the Kings are rejecting their extradition
Moreno is also awaiting translated copies of the paperwork provided by the Kings’ lawyer before he decides whether to extradite the couple to Britain, where they are being accused of neglecting a minor. No charges have been pressed against them in Spain, and the Kings are rejecting their extradition.
The family of Ashya King, who are Jehovah’s Witnesses, claim that they want him to undergo proton beam therapy, but that Britain’s National Health Service will not provide it. They allegedly took him to Spain to sell a holiday home they own there and raise the funds to pay for the treatment in the Czech Republic.
Proton beam therapy is said to be less aggressive than radiotherapy, although the NHS said it only works in very rare and specific cases.
Naveed King, Ashya’s 20-year-old brother, has uploaded a new video on YouTube defending his parents’ actions and underscoring that they brought everything necessary to Spain to ensure Ashya’s safety. In an earlier video, Brett King explained the reasons why his parents fled with his brother and assured that they only wanted the best for him.