Page last updated at 16:22 GMT, Friday, 9 May 2008 17:22 UK

Widower loses fight to stay in UK

Arnel Cabrera
Mr Cabrera was in England on his wife's visa

A Filipino man whose wife died after being given an epidural in the arm rather than the spine during childbirth has lost his fight to stay in the UK.

Before Mayra Cabrera's death, Arnel Cabrera, 38, was permitted to stay in Swindon because she was a nurse.

But Alex Rook, lawyer for Mr Cabrera, confirmed the Home Office had refused his application to stay.

An inquest ruled Mrs Cabrera died unlawfully killed as a result of the actions of the hospital.

The coroner also said the Swindon and Marlborough NHS Trust and the midwife who administered the injection was guilty of gross negligence manslaughter.

I find it difficult to appreciate how the Home Office has reached this decision
Wiltshire coroner, David Masters

Mr Cabrera was said to be "too upset to speak" and was "devastated and shocked [at] this decision."

Speaking of the Home Office ruling Mr Rook said: "This is an absolutely dreadful decision.

"If Mayra hadn't been killed, the family would still be living here.

"I will be writing to the relevant Home Office ministers asking them to reconsider their decision."

Mr Cabrera came to the UK in 2003 after his theatre nurse wife was recruited by the NHS to work at Great Western Hospital in Swindon.

But on 11 May 2004, she died at the same hospital when the potent epidural anaesthetic Bupivacaine was mistakenly injected into her arm rather than her spinal cord, as she was giving birth to the couple's son Zachary.

'Extraordinary decision'

The health trust admitted liability for the error as soon as it realised what had happened.

Speaking about the deportation decision, the Wiltshire coroner, David Masters said: "This is extraordinary.

"In view of the verdict reached by the jury following a long and detailed inquest and in view of my comments.

"I find it difficult to appreciate how the Home Office has reached this decision."

Mr Cabrera's letter of refusal from the Home Office's UK Border Agency said: "It is considered that [Mr Cabrera] has not established a family life with his son in the United Kingdom.

Mayra Cabrera
Mrs Cabrera died after giving birth to her son Zachary

"As his son [Zachary] remains in the Philippines there are no insurmountable obstacles to his family life being continued overseas."

Mr Cabrera has been fighting a deportation order since her death, and had sent his other son Zachary back to the Philippines as the inquest and legal proceedings took place.

However, he had decided to give immigration authorities until next Wednesday before he flew home and effectively give up on his dream of remaining in the UK.

In a statement, he said: "I have been unable to return to the Philippines during this difficult period and I desperately miss my young son, Zachary.

Mr Cabrera was subsequently informed after his wife's death that because she was no longer working in the UK he could no longer stay here.

A spokesman for the Home Office said: "All applications for leave to enter or remain are carefully considered on their individual merits."

Drip death widower set to give up
09 May 08 |  Wiltshire
Widower fights deportation order
08 Feb 08 |  Wiltshire
Mother's epidural death unlawful
05 Feb 08 |  Wiltshire
Boss defends midwife at inquest
18 Jan 08 |  Wiltshire
Drugs mix-up 'led to nurse death'
17 Jan 08 |  Wiltshire
Midwife speaks of woman's death
08 Jan 08 |  Wiltshire
Injection death hospital 'sorry'
30 May 06 |  Wiltshire
Inquiry follows injection death
25 May 06 |  Wiltshire

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