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Evans loses last embryo appeal

10th April 2007

The Wiltshire woman who has been fighting to use frozen embryos fertilised by her former partner has lost her final appeal.

Natallie Evans previously said that her legal bid at the Grand Chamber of the European Court was her last chance to have a baby.  She was left infertile in 2001 following treatment for ovarian cancer and had six of the embryos she made with Howard Johnston frozen before starting cancer therapy.   However, Mr Johnston withdrew his consent for the embryos to be used after the couple split up in 2002 which is when Ms Evans began a lengthy legal process to gain permission to use the embryos alone.  She admitted on the BBC series ‘A Child Against All Odds’ earlier this year that her chances of success weren’t good but that she would do anything to try and save her embryos.

After Ms Evans and Mr Johnston ended their relationship Mr Johnston wrote to the fertility clinic asking for the embryos to be destroyed.  However, Ms Evans argued that as he had already consented to their creation, storage and use he should not be allowed to change his mind.   Current UK legislation states that both parties need to give consent for frozen embryos to be used and enables either the man or the woman to pull out at any time before implantation.

Having previously fought her case in the High Court, the House of Lords and the European Court of Human Rights Ms Evans has no further place to take her appeal and the embryos will now be destroyed.

 

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