German pharma company takes on death row

Judge to decide whether Nebraska execution can proceed

A German pharmaceutical company filed the lawsuit against Nebraska to keep the state from using two lethal injection drugs that they suspect came from their company.

An attorney for Fresenius Kabi, a German pharmaceutical company with a subsidiary in the USA, says it will file an immediate appeal of the decision. Fresenius Kabi, which opposes the use of its drugs in executions, claimed the state may have illegally obtained the drugs.

In an affidavit filed Thursday, Department of Correctional Services Director Scott Frakes said he contacted at least 40 suppliers in six states and found only one that agreed to provide his agency with the necessary drugs.

U.S. District Judge Richard Kopf Friday afternoon refused to temporarily block the state from carrying out the execution of Carey Dean Moore, who was convicted of killing two Omaha cab drivers in 1979.

The company argued that the drugs were sold to the state in 2015 by mistake, and the state refused to give them back when requested.

The drug company will file an appeal but it likely won't happen before Carey Dean Moore's execution.

The state also notes that one of its protocol drugs expires on August 31, which will leave the state with no way to carry out future executions.

"Nebraska's lethal injection drugs were purchased lawfully and pursuant to the state of Nebraska's duty to carry out lawful capital sentences", the state attorney general's office said in a short statement. She told the Omaha World-Herald that waiting 38 years for the execution is enough. "It's like a slap in our face". She said the months leading up to the scheduled execution have again rekindled the pain and fear she felt after her father's death. He is not contesting his execution order, but it could nevertheless be delayed by the lawsuit, should it prevail in an appeal.

Moore has stopped fighting the state's efforts to execute him, leaving death penalty opponents with no real options other than to hope a drug manufacturer challenged the state's use of its products.

Capital punishment is not only illegal in the European Union, but is widely unpopular among many voters and viewed as a grotesque human rights violation.

Helgeland-Renken's brother, Steve Helgeland, said attention is often focused on the legal battle to execute Moore, but the lives shattered by his crimes must be remembered. "I just want the thought that he is not living there. and hope to God that no one takes his spot".

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