Brain tumour boy's parents freed in Spain

Brain tumour boy's parents freed in Spain

CASE DROPPED: Brett King and Naghemeh King, the parents of brain tumour patient Ashya King

URGENT CASE: Brain tumour patient Ashya King

First published in News by

THE parents of brain tumour patient Ashya King are being released in Spain, according to family members.

The five-year-old's brother Danny said Brett and Naghmeh King were being released from prison in Madrid without any charges.

Asked how he was feeling, he said: "I'm in shock, at the moment, we've been waiting so long for this moment to come, and it's finally come."

He thanked everyone who had supported their cause, including Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

The National Court in Madrid said in a statement that a judge had decided to free the couple after British authorities dropped the case against them.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) had said it was seeking the withdrawal of the European arrest warrant that sparked the pursuit of the parents, who were arrested in Spain on Saturday after taking Ashya from Southampton General Hospital last Thursday.

The CPS said it had arranged with Southampton Magistrates Court for proceedings to be dropped and the arrest warrants discharged.

Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the move, saying: "I welcome the prosecution against Ashya King's parents being dropped.

"It's important this little boy gets treatment and the love of his family."

Simon Hayes, police and crime commissioner for Hampshire, said he would seek assurances about the "quality of the information" provided by the hospital to police.

He said: "In light of today's announcement by the CPS, I now need to be assured as to the quality of the information given by Southampton General Hospital to Hampshire Constabulary.

"Now that Ashya is receiving the medical assistance he requires and Mr and Mrs King will be reunited with him, this is the time to analyse decisions that were made." Ashya is being treated in Malaga.

A spokesman for University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust said: "We are pleased that Ashya's parents will be released and will be able to see their son.

"When Ashya went missing last week we had no option but to call the police because we did not know where he was or what his parents' intentions were.

"The police asked us to make statements about his clinical condition and need of medical care and we stand by the accuracy of the information we gave them.

"No hospital should be deterred from raising the alarm when they have doubts about the safety of a child."

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the Government was proposing to fly a top oncologist to Spain to advise the family.

He said: "What we want to do is make sure that Ashya's family get the best independent advice.

"We are arranging for an independent expert to fly if the family would like to Spain to give them advice as to exactly what the right course of action is for Ashya going forward."

Mr Hunt said the NHS offers proton beam therapy for children who need it and had funded 99 patients in the last year, adding: "It is not always appropriate, it is not always safe."

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