By: Max Evans, UK Express
Ashya’s father, Brett King, 51, said in a heart-rending video posted on Youtube last night that the family – later stopped by police in Spain- hoped to reach the Czech Republic for cutting-edge cancer treatment.
Ashya’s parents, who were taken into custody after three days on the run, had been seeking proton beam radiotherapy – currently only available to treat eye conditions on the NHS in the UK.
Shortly before Hampshire Police confirmed that the youngster had been found, Mr King took to the internet to insist that he and his family have been unfairly portrayed as “kidnappers”.
With Ashya sat on his lap, plugged into a drip, Mr King said: “We have been labelled as kidnappers, putting his life at risk, neglect.
“As you can see, there’s nothing wrong with him, he’s very happy, actually, since we took him out of hospital. He’s smiling a lot more. He’s been very much interacting with us.
Mr King explained that he wanted Ashya to benefit from proton beam therapy, which other European countries are already using for a range of cancers in adults and children.
It works by sending charges into cancer cells, with doses of radiation aimed directly at the tumour.
Mr King said he spoke to specialists following Ashya’s surgery and requested the treatment.
He said: “The surgeon did a wonderful job on his head that took out the brain tumour, completely they reckon.
“But straight away afterwards he went into what’s called posterior fossa syndrome, which means very limited moving or talking or doing anything.”
He said proton beam was “so much better for children with brain cancer”.“It zones in on the area, whereby normal radiation passes right through his head and comes out the other side and destroys everything in his head,” he added.
“I went straight back to my room and looked it up and the American sites and French sites and Switzerland sites where they have proton beam said the opposite.”
Mr King said he had even been willing to sell the family’s flat to fund proton beam treatment.
He told the authorities: “I just please ask, call off this ridiculous chase. We are not neglecting our son. He’s in perfectly good health.
“My son is smiling, he’s happy, we’re doing things as a family. We just want to be left in peace.”
But Ashya was later taken under police guard to Hospital Materno-Infantil in Malaga, after Mr King and his wife, Naghemeh, 45, were detained by police.
His elder brother Naveed is believd to be taking care of Ashay’s four further siblings.
Attention had earlier focused on the family’s £300,000 holiday home in Marbella.
Two Civil Guard cars were outside the gated estate where the Kings, from Southsea, Hampshire, own an apartment.
Uniformed police were also outside and roads leading to it were blocked.
Earlier in the day, police said a member of the public had told Spanish authorities he had seen a child resembling Ashya in a grey van in the Basque Country.
They were believed to have to sailed Southsea, Portsmouth, with Brittany Ferries to Cherbourg, triggering a missing persons alert by Interpol, at the request of Hampshire police.
Frail Ashya relies on a wheelchair and cannot speak. He is fed through a machine that police feared may have run out of battery power.
Today, police defended their decision to launch an international search after a five-year-old boy with a brain tumour was taken out of hospital by his family without doctors’ consent.
Assistant Chief Constable Chris Shead, of Hampshire Constabulary, said he was aware that the police’s approach had created a “significant amount of debate”.
He said: “We had medical experts telling us that Ashya was in grave danger. Medical experts were saying to us that if he didn’t get the care that he needed, there was a potential threat to his life.
“Faced with those circumstances, I make no apology for the police being as proactive as we possibly can to actually find Ashya and ensure that he gets the help he needed.”
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