EVANSVILLE, Ind., Aug. 9 (UPI) -- A drug manufacturer has sued the state of Nebraska to stop it from using the company's drugs to kill a man.
Fresenius Kabi, an Illinois company, alleged in a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday that Nebraska illegally obtained two of the company's drugs and plans to use them to execute Carey Dean Moore. The suit could delay Moore's execution, which is scheduled for Tuesday. A federal judge will hear arguments on the case Friday.
"While Fresenius Kabi takes no position on capital punishment, we strongly object to the use of our products for this purpose," the company said in a statement. " Our products were developed and are approved solely for patient care, and we expressly restrict the sale of our products for use in lethal injection procedures."
The company also forbids its wholesalers and distributors from selling to correctional facilities. However, an inventory of the drugs Nebraska intends to use in the execution includes several 30ml r vials of potassium chloride, a substance used to stop the heart. Fresenius Kabi is the only company that sells vials of that size, the suit alleges.
The company also believes the state has its cisatracurium, a paralytic.
"We made no sales to the Department of Correctional Services, nor have any of our authorized distributors," the company said in a statement. "So we can only conclude Nebraska may have acquired this product from an unauthorized seller."
The complaint alleges Fresenius Kabi's reputation would be harmed if its drugs were used to kill a man.
Another pharmaceutical company recently won a similar case in Nevada after it sued to stop the state from using its drugs in an execution.
Many pharmaceutical companies oppose their drugs being used by states to kill people, and have enacted internal policies to keep correctional facilities from purchasing them. States, therefore, often struggle to acquire lethal injection drugs.
Nebraska, like other death penalty states, does not reveal the sources of its lethal injection drugs, making it difficult for pharmaceutical companies to know if their drugs are being used in executions. Several media outlets and the American Civil Liberties Union recently sued Nebraska to force the state to reveal the sources of their lethal injection drugs. They won the case, but the state appealed the decision and has not released the information.