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Tony Nicklinson Death: Lawyers Will Still Appeal For Right To Die

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Tony Nicklinson lawyers announced that they are appealing against the court's decision
Tony Nicklinson lawyers announced that they are appealing against the court's decision

Lawyers representing a second locked-in syndrome sufferer - who lost his High Court action on the same day as Tony Nicklinson - announced today that they are to appeal.

The announcement comes after the death of locked-in syndrome sufferer Tony Nicklinson, who last week lost his legal challenge for the right to end his life with a doctor's help, died at home in Wiltshire on Wednesday after contracting pneumonia.

His lawyer said Nicklinson had died at 10am, following a "rapid deterioration in health", and had been refusing food and medical treatment.

Family solicitor Saimo Chahal said: "I am extremely sad to tell you that I received a call at 10.45am from Jane Nicklinson to inform me that her husband Tony died peacefully at home at about 10am this morning."

He added: "Jane told me that Tony went downhill over last weekend, having contracted pneumonia.

"He had made an advanced directive in 2004 refusing any life-sustaining treatment and also refused food from last week."

The man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons but is referred to as "Martin", suffered a massive stroke in August 2008.

He is unable to speak and virtually unable to move, describing his life as "undignified, distressing and intolerable" - and wants to be allowed a "dignified suicide".

Richard Stein, head of human rights at law firm Leigh Day & Co, said: "Martin is very clear that he wants to end his own life as he chooses.

"As an able-bodied person, I have the ability to choose how I live and how I die.

"Martin's right to choose the manner of his death is denied to him by his disability and the courts.

"We will continue to fight for a 'compassionate defence' for anyone who will help him take the necessary steps to end his tortuous existence.".

Martin said in the statement: "I am relieved for Tony and offer my condolences to his family for the man they'll miss.

"I hope that I too can be set free from this existence but I would like it to be in the manner of my choosing.

"I intend to fight the decision given by the High Court which takes away my right to choose how my life will end and have instructed my lawyers to take the decision to the Court of Appeal, not just for me but for many others who need the relief that death would bring."

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