Without more information I believe your friend would be time barred from appealing this decision and would have to speak to an attorney who handles habeas corpus cases.
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I see many, many procedural problems in your friend's way. Some, but not all of them, have to do with deadlines. You should consult an attorney familiar with appellate and collateral remedies in Virginia, including federal habeas, who can give this case a procedural review to determine whether anything at all can be done at this point. This is not a half-hour consultation. The attorney may have to put a fair amount of time into the evaluation. Don't be surprised if, in the end, the answer you get is disappointing. On the basis of the little you have told us I would not be optimistic.
This questions raises many complex issues. It should be taken to a experience criminal defense lawyer to evaluation the possibilities for post-conviction relief, and the applicable deadlines. Your friend may be time barred on a number of the issues. It will take considerable time to assess the case.
This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is advisable to consult with an attorney with full disclosure of relevant facts for a comprehensive leagl opinion.
Try Sheldon & Flood in Fairfax - they do appeals & habeases all over Virginia including a lot of capital punishment cases, including the DC sniper.703-691-8410 info@CSFDefense.com http://www.csfdefense.com/