Supreme Court Allows Appeal of 1999 Murder Case

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By Liz Blood

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa Supreme Court ruling in a Des Moines murder case could open the door for many convicted killers to file appeals claiming their constitutional rights have been violated.

The court says in a ruling filed Friday that Phuoc Nguyen may appeal his 1999 murder conviction. Nguyen argues murder cases prior to a 2006 Supreme Court ruling that changed Iowa's felony-murder law are treated differently than those prosecuted after the ruling.

Nguyen says that violates the constitutional protection that everyone should be treated equally.

The 2006 court decision says prosecutors must prove all elements of murder instead of relying on a lesser offense of willful injury.

Nguyen was convicted for driving a car from which another man shot into a crowd. The shots killed a man.
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