The state of Missouri has been granted a new appeals court hearing to argue that its lethal injection drug supplier should remain anonymous.
Earlier this month, a three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Missouri Department of Corrections must reveal its source of pentobarbital, the drug it has used since late 2013 to carry out executions.
Missouri officials maintain that its supplier would cease providing the drug if the identity was made public.
The state requested a rehearing, and on Tuesday that request was granted.
The court also granted a request by the drug supplier to enter the case and be identified anonymously as M7.
No date has been set for the rehearing, but the court gave the parties until Sept. 23 to file additional documents.
The suit that led to the order was filed by two Mississippi death row inmates who are challenging the constitutionality of that state’s use of a three-drug cocktail to execute prisoners.
In order to prevail in their suit, the law requires that they provide an alternative method of execution that is readily available.
The Mississippi inmates then subpoenaed the information from Missouri, prompting the legal action that led to the appeals court ruling.