Court of Appeal hears lawyers plead that Alfie Evans be allowed to be transferred to hospital in Rome

By Dave Andrusko

The lead paragraphs in a Tuesday Washington Post story about Alfie Evans beautifully summarized what is taking place as Alfie’s parents desperately try to persuade the British judiciary to allow them to take their seriously ill toddler to Gesu children’s hospital, which has indicated its willingness to admit the 23-month-old son of Tom Evans and Kate James.

Julie Zauzmer wrote

Pope Francis has been praying for the British toddler Alfie Evans — and the Italian government has granted the child Italian citizenship and lined up a transportation plan that could swiftly bring the sick little boy to a Vatican hospital.

But Alfie’s doctors say he cannot be healed and shouldn’t make the trip at all.

On Tuesday, according to lawyers representing Alfie’s family, a British judge sided with the doctors, saying that the family cannot accept the offer to take Alfie to the Vatican for treatment. An appeals court will hear the case on Wednesday, according to the BBC.

That hearing is before Court of Appeal judges Lord Justice McFarlane, Lord Justice Coulson and Lady Justice King and is taking place as this update is being composed.

Tom and Kate now are represented by separate lawyers: Paul Diamond (who went first) is representing Mr. Evans; Jason Coppel is now counsel for Ms. James.

The hospital disconnected Alfie’s ventilator on Monday, a little after 9pm London time. Contrary to what was repeatedly said in court, Alfie did not “die quickly” but is breathing on his own. Mr. Evans said the hospital initially did not provide nourishment (and still hasn’t) but has shifted to giving Alfie water.

However you don’t requirement a M.D. to know a seriously ill child will eventually die from the absence of nourishment.

According to the Liverpool Echo [], Diamond told the court Alfie shouldn’t be “kept prisoner” in hospital “when there is alternative, fantastic care available for him.” He added that the family should “not be bound by a decision which is now three months old.

Diamond sad there is a “military air ambulance on standby at the request of the Pope” waiting to fly Alfie to Rome.

Alfie has been granted Italian citizenship but the British courts, to this point, are brushing this off, as they did once again this afternoon when Coppel raised the point. The Court of Appeal heard that Kate James says her son is “struggling and needs immediate intervention.”

We will update this story on an ongoing basis.