Arthur Porter has spent the past four months in a Panamanian prison and says that he’s been unable to get any kind of medical treatment for his stage-four lung cancer.
The doctor and former head of the McGill University Health Centre was arrested in Panama City in late May for his alleged role in a plot to bilk millions from Montreal’s new super-hospital project.
The radiation oncologist diagnosed himself with terminal lung cancer and had been treating himself in Nassau, Bahamas.
He and wife Pamela Mattock Porter were both arrested in Panama City’s airport while en route to Trinidad and Tobago, an island nation off the coast of Venezuela.
Porter has previously told Canadian media that he was too sick to return to Canada to face the charges against him.
Now he’s saying he hasn’t received any medical care. His lawyer filed an official complaint with the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Human Rights last week denouncing Porter’s detention.
And in a letter forwarded to CBC News by his biographer, he complains he hasn’t received medical treatment for his cancer.
"I have not received any medical attention or treatment of any kind. I have had no doctor appointments, even simple blood tests,” he wrote.
“As an oncologist, I can say that I would never inflict the kind of neglect I have been subjected to these many months."
However, his doctor Karol Sikora — who is also director of medical oncology at Porter’s Nassau cancer clinic — told CBC News that he saw Porter just eight weeks ago in person.
“He was fine. He was doing very well. He’s had an amazing response to a relatively new [cancer-fighting] drug called crizotinib,” Sikora said.
Porter is wanted on multiple charges, including fraud, conspiracy to commit government fraud, abuse of trust, secret commissions and laundering the proceeds of a crime.
He is currently fighting extradition from jail.