Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Nebraska seeks execution drugs without a death penalty law

Nebraska has hired Ben England, who also has been hired by other states, to help it import drugs for use in executions, according to BuzzFeed. Nebraska received a warning from the Food and Drug Administration that their attempt to purchase sodium thiopental from overseas suppliers violated federal law regarding the importation of drugs.
However, Nebraska doesn't have the death penalty. In May, Nebraska became the first conservative state in more than 40 years to abolish the death penalty, with lawmakers defying their Republican governor, Pete Ricketts, a staunch supporter of capital punishment who had lobbied vigorously against banning it, reported the New York Times.
Then a referendum to repeal a law that abolished the death penalty in Nebraska passed with enough approved signatures that it will now be on the ballot during the 2016 general election, according to the Omaha World-Herald.
The records in Nebraska, some of which are marked confidential and “attorney-client privileged,” show Nebraska’s Department of Corrections paid attorney Ben England $399 to register sodium thiopental with the FDA that a man named Chris Harris and his company, Harris Pharma, claims to be able to manufacture. But prior reports from BuzzFeed News call into question information listed on the registration.
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