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NC court to hear case on death penalty process

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By TOM BREEN
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- The state Supreme Court will hear arguments that could help determine the future of the death penalty in North Carolina.

Oral arguments are scheduled for Monday in a case involving five death row inmates who say the Council of State failed to follow correct procedure when adopting a new set of guidelines for executions.

An administrative law judge ordered the council, which consists of all statewide elected officials, to revise the policy. But the council declined, and a Wake County Superior Court judge ruled the administrative court lacked the jurisdiction to make its ruling.

Ken Rose with the Center for Death Penalty Litigation represents one of the inmates. He says he's confident the case will ultimately prevail.

No one has been executed in North Carolina since 2006.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-03-11-11 1249EST

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