While Christopher Skase and his family “fight for survival,” his lawyer is continuing the legal fight against Skase being expelled from Spain. Sources for his lawyer Antoni Coll have confirmed that before the end of this week, an appeal to the Constitutional Tribunal in Madrid, Skase's only avenue of appeal, will be lodged. Spanish government sources said when the Palma High Court ruled that Skase is to be expelled from Spain that the former Australian business tycoon, stricken with stomach cancer, can appeal in Madrid, if his lawyer feels there is a case of Skase's fundamental rights having been abused. The government said that Skase can also take an appeal to the Court of Human Rights in Brussels and over the past few days it has become clear that this next round of the legal battle will become a humanitarian issue. While the Spanish would rather Skase left the country voluntarily, lodging an appeal in Madrid is not expected to prevent the Spanish from expelling him should they decide to act. Sources for Skase's Palma lawyer also denied that the Palma High Court ruling has lifted all previous restrictions surrounding Skase's expulsion from Spain. According to the lawyers Skase can only be expelled to a neighbouring or bordering country and by boat (because of his health problems). Furthermore, as far as Skase's lawyers are concerned, he cannot be expelled to either a country which has an extradition treaty with Australia or a Commonwealth country. Should that be the case, the Commonwealth of Dominica, where Spain would seek to send Skase as he is a Commonwealth of Dominica citizen, is ruled out. Skase's doctor, Felipe Nicolau, has said that he will not allow an Australian doctor to examine his patient. But Nicolau is prepared to meet the Australian Justice Minister to arrange for Skase to be examined by an independent doctor which Nicolau says no Australian would be. It was reported in Australia yesterday that the stomach cancer may force the Director of Public Prosecutions to decide against proceeding with charges. Senator Vanstone was asked whether it was possible that the DPP may not go ahead with charges, which could also include a fresh bid to extradite Skase should he leave Spain from a third country, if Skase was extremely ill and Vanstone replied “yes.” However Vanstone said yesterday that should Skase move or be moved and sets foot in a country which has an extradition agreement with Australia, Skase would be ordered back to Australia.

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