The parents of Alfie Evans, who has been at the centre of a life-support treatment dispute, have lost the latest round of a legal battle.
Three Court of Appeal judges have dismissed another challenge by Tom Evans and Kate James, who are both in their early twenties and from Liverpool.
The couple, who want Alfie to be cared for in a Rome hospital, appealed following a ruling made by a High Court judge late on Tuesday.
But appeal judges on Wednesday dismissed their challenge following a hearing in London which the couple did not attend.
The parents of Alfie Evans are appealing a High Court decision preventing the seriously ill boy from being taken abroad for treatment, lawyers have confirmed.
A spokeswoman for the Christian Legal Centre, representing Alfie’s parents, said the case is due to be heard at the Court of Appeal on Wednesday afternoon.
Lord Justice Mcfarland revealed Mr Evans has started pursuing private prosecutions against three doctors who he claims ‘conspired to murder’ Alfie by withdrawing his life-support.
The judge told Mr Evans’ lawyer: “Your client purported to take out a private prosecution to have three named doctors charged with the criminal offence of conspiracy to murder.
“Those summonses were served on the doctors and I hear you say that there is no hostility to the NHS.”
“There is no hostility but within that process there are tensions,” Mr Diamond replied.
Lord Justice Coulson added: “There are rather more than tensions”, adding the accusation related to “the most serious possible offence”.
The judge went on: “That simply doesn’t square with there being no hostility to the NHS. As my children would say ‘end of’.”
Jason Coppel QC told the court that Alfie’s mother Kate James had said: “Alfie is struggling and needs immediate intervention.”
Ms James is now being represented by a different barrister from Alfie’s father.
Mr Coppel said: “I have spoken to her directly. The purpose of the phone call was to say that Alfie was struggling and needed immediate intervention to ensure that he survives at least for the purposes of today and she asked me if I would pass that on to the court and ask that the court invite the hospital to take the appropriate steps.”
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On Tuesday Mr Justice Hayden ruled the boy may be allowed home from Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, but will not be allowed to go to Rome for further treatment.
The 23-month-old confounded doctors’ expectations when he continued to live after life-support was withdrawn on Monday night, his father, Tom Evans, said.