UK & World News

  • 1 September 2014, 7:42

Ashya's Parents Arrive For Extradition Hearing

The parents of critically ill Ashya King, who took him out of hospital without medical consent, have arrived at an extradition hearing in Spain as his brother defended their actions.

Brett King, 51, and his wife Naghmeh, 45, from Portsmouth, were arrested in Spain on Saturday after taking their five-year-old son, who has a brain tumour, out of hospital in Southampton to seek specialist cancer treatment abroad.

The couple are now at a Madrid court for an extradition hearing, according to the Reuters news agency.

On Sunday, they were taken in handcuffs to a court house in the town of Velez-Malaga.

Ashya's brother Naveed, 20, has posted a video blog claiming the family had stocked up on the food and syringes that the boy needed ahead of their journey and bought him a brand new wheelchair costing up to 1,600.

He said his brother was "obviously happy, he wasn't in any way in any danger and he was not neglected at all".

And Ashya's grandmother has been critical of the police for arresting the couple, who she said are "brilliant parents".

Patricia King told Sky News: "I think they (the police) have been absolutely disgraceful - I have nothing but condemnation for them."

Mrs King said her son took desperately ill Ashya because the NHS said there was nothing more it could do for him.

She said he was selling his holiday home in Spain to pay for proton beam therapy, which she thought would cost 90,000.

"To be told that that's it, that you can't do any more for the child, of course Brett took alternative measures," she said.

"Other people have done it (sought proton beam therapy), so why have they gone after my son like this?

"They've made him out to be a criminal."

Sky News sources say British police have arrived in the area to question his parents.

Ashya, who had surgery for a brain tumour last week at Southampton General Hospital, is thought to be in a stable condition at the Materno-Infantil hospital in Malaga.

His six brothers and sisters are still thought to be in the southern Spanish city.

Earlier, Assistant Chief Constable Chris Shead, of Hampshire Police, defended his force's actions.

"Faced with the situation that we were, we had medical experts telling us Ashya was in grave danger ... if he didn't get the care that he needed there was a potential threat to his life," he said.

"So I make no apologies for being as proactive in this investigation as we have been."

He said it was too soon to say when Ashya would come back to the UK, but said Southampton General Hospital was liaising with doctors taking care of him in Spain.

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