AZ Execution Scheduled Using Foreign Made Drug

Update: The Arizona Supreme Court has denied the requests for a stay of execution and to produce information about the drug's origin. The ruling is here.

At a court hearing in Arizona today to stay the execution of Jeffrey Landrigan set for next Tuesday, the Arizona Attorney General admitted that the sodium thiopental it planned to inject into Landrigan was not made by Hospira, Inc., the one U.S. company authorized to manufacture it. In other words, it came from a foreign source.

His lawyers argue that using the drug sodium thiopental that has expired or was obtained from an unreliable source may not work correctly, potentially subjecting Landrigan to cruel and unusual punishment through death by suffocation.

They want the Supreme Court to order the state to disclose the source of the drug..... prosecutors said they can’t identify the source because state law requires confidentiality for those involved with executions.

But, the prosecutor did acknowledge it didn't come from Hospira, which isn't currently producing the drug. And no other U.S. company is authorized to manufacture it. [More...]

From the Arizona Republic:

Thiopental is a controlled substance, and therefore subject to regulation by federal authorities. The federal Food and Drug Administration does not "have a mechanism for importing that drug." And a spokeswoman for the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, which tracks drug shortages, told The Republic "any import to alleviate a shortage would have to come from an FDA-approved source."

The attorneys want the execution postponed until those questions are cleared up.

A ruling on whether the state must disclose the source of the drug is expected later today or tomorrow.

< California Mothers for Marijuana Legalization and Prop 19 | NM Supreme Court Rejects Constitutional Rights in Juvenile Sentencing >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    it seems only the patriotic (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by cpinva on Wed Oct 20, 2010 at 06:20:42 PM EST
    thing to do. if the state feels it must execute someone, it should be required to do so using only american made products of death. i mean, what does this say, to the rest of the world, that we don't trust our own manufacturers enough, to use their products to kill people with?

    not good at all for potential international business.

    No importation of drugs allowed (none / 0) (#1)
    by MO Blue on Wed Oct 20, 2010 at 05:19:26 PM EST
    because citizens cannot be sure that they are safe. So saith our national drug representatives otherwise known as the government of the U.S and members of Congress.

    Hellbent on capital punishment (none / 0) (#2)
    by shoephone on Wed Oct 20, 2010 at 05:20:58 PM EST
    They'll use any avenue they can to execute people. After watching some of last night's Frontline piece on Todd Willingham, I remain stunned as ever that any AG and any governor can pretend they have 100% guarantee of guilt when executing someone.