Mother of girl who won right to be cryogenically frozen accuses father of lying

The girl's father said last week he had been prevented from seeing his daughter after her death

Click to follow
The Independent Online

The mother of a girl who won the right to be cryogenically frozen has accused her ex-husband of lying in comments regarding his daughter’s death.

The terminally ill 14-year-old had her remains frozen and stored in the hope she could be revived in the future after winning a High Court battle shortly before she died of cancer.

Her divorced parents were embroiled in a dispute over whether her wish should be granted.

Her mother, who she lived with, supported her wish for cryogenic preservation but her father was reluctant to approve the plan.

The girl’s father said a judge had prevented him from saying goodbye to his dead daughter before her body was frozen and claimed he had not seen her since 2007 on the insistence of his ex-wife.

He told The Telegraph he had spent months being treated for cancer in the same hospital as his daughter without ever knowing she was there.

“My daughter didn't even know all the court case procedures that I have been so desperately trying to see her,” he told the newspaper last week. “I am so sad about it.”

cryogenic-case-1.jpg
(AFP/Getty)

But the girl’s mother has called his comments “unacceptable and untrue” in a statement released by her lawyers.

It said she did not wish to comment herself as she was “devastated” by her daughter’s death.

“The mother wishes to clarify that she considers the comments made by the father and his family in the press to be unacceptable and untrue,” it said.

Mr Justice Peter Jackson found in favour of the girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and she is now being stored at the Cryonics Institute in Clinton Township, Michigan, USA.

Her father has heavily criticised the institute and accused it of selling “false hope” to vulnerable people such as his daughter.

“I believe they are selling false hope to those who are frightened of dying – taking advantage of vulnerable people,” he told the Mail on Sunday.

“When I asked if there was even a one in a million chance of my daughter being brought back to life, they could not say there was.

“I think it would be doubly impossible to both bring her back from the dead and cure her cancer, and companies should not hold out some false hope.”

Clive Coen, a neuroscience professor at King's College London, said cryogenics companies should not be allowed to advertise because there is no evidence the technique works in humans.

He told The Guardian: “There is no evidence outside amphibia and tissue slices that any of this works. We're not at a point where regulation is appropriate. The whole body is just ridiculous and the whole brain is only slightly less ridiculous.”

The judge's ruling was made in October but could not be revealed until after her death.

Comments