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Texas attorney general: Prison system can keep identity of execution drug provider secret

The Texas attorney general says the state doesn't have to disclose where it gets its execution drugs.

The opinion released Thursday marks a reversal from Attorney General Greg Abbott, the Republican nominee for governor. Abbott had rebuffed three similar attempts by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to keep the drugs secret since 2010.

The department argues that information about the drug supplier must remain confidential to protect the company from threats of violence. But attorneys for death row inmates say they need to know where the lethal injection drugs come from to ensure quality and protect inmates from unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment.

Abbott's decision can be appealed in court. It stems from an open records request filed ahead of the April executions of two condemned inmates.

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