Attorney General Barr certifies Arizona as compliant with Chapter 154 requirements

United States Attorney General William Barr, under the authority conferred to him by 28 U.S.C. 2265, has "determine[d] and certif[ied] that Arizona has established a mechanism for the appointment, compensation, and payment of reasonable litigation expenses of competent counsel in state postconviction proceedings brought by indigent prisoners who have been sentenced to death, including provision of standards of competency for the appointment of counsel in such proceedings, which satisfies the requirements of chapter 154."  He further determined and certified "that Arizona had an established capital counsel mechanism satisfying the requirements of chapter 154 as of May 19, 1998, and that Arizona has continuously had a capital counsel mechanism satisfying the requirements of chapter 154 since that date."  This decision means that Arizona is entitled to seek the benefit of special federal habeas corpus procedures designed to expedite the proceedings in cases where state post-conviction counsel had been appointed on or after May 19, 1998.   

The order certifying Arizona as compliant with Chapter 154's requirements and explaining the decision will be published in the Federal Register on April 14, 2020.

An appeal of this decision may be taken to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.  Attorney General Barr declined to issue a stay of his decision pending appeal.