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Court to hear challenge to Arizona execution law

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The constitutionality of Arizona’s execution law is at issue in a case being heard by the state Court of Appeals on Tuesday.

A three-judge panel will hear arguments on an appeal of a trial judge’s ruling against a lawsuit filed by lawyers for death row inmates,

The lawsuit contends that the execution law delegates too much authority to the Department of Corrections to decide how injection executions will be conducted.

According to the lawsuit, that violates the constitutional doctrine of separation of powers between branches of government and deprives inmates of meaningful legal review of execution procedures.

The state’s lawyers say the department’s execution protocol has been upheld in court. They also say the Legislature is allowed to delegate procedural matters to agency officials.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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