Drug company refiles injunctive relief, asks Arkansas to return execution drug

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Just one day after the Arkansas Supreme Court threw out a temporary restraining order, McKesson Medical-Surgical Incorporated have filed a new lawsuit asking for the State of Arkansas to return its supply of one of the drugs used in the executions.

Originally, Judge Wendell Griffen issued a temporary restraining order against the state until it returned 10 vials of 20mg vecuronium bromide to McKesson. But the judge was taken off the case by the state's Supreme Court and the temporary restraining order was thrown out.

In this new lawsuit, McKesson claimed that the manufacturer of the drug prohibits the company from distributing or selling vecuronium for use in capital punishments. The company said that it "would not knowingly sell any prescription drug to [Arkansas Department of Correction] for any purpose unless the ADC had a current medical license to file."

McKesson said that ADC is a long time customer of the company and for most of the relationship, the ADC largely bought medical surgical supplies and other related items. In July 2016, McKesson claimed that ADC "leveraged" its medical license to purchase the 10 vials of vecuronium bromide.

"In doing so, ADC led McKesson to believe that the order was placed at the request of or for the benefit of the licensed physician and would be used for a legitimate medical purpose," McKesson said in the court document.

The company said that ADC placed the order for the drug over the phone and never disclosed that the drug was to be used for executions. McKesson cited a testimony from Rory Griffin, ADC Deputy Director, in which he said ADC "undertook these actions" knowing that the manufacturer of the drug doesn't permit it to be used in executions.

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has filed a motion to move the case out of Pulaski County and instead hold the case in Faulkner County Circuit Court. We will you updated on all the latest execution news.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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