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Published opinion

Before JOLLY, HIGGINBOTHAM, and HAYNES, Circuit Judges.

Federal habeas petitioner Felix Rocha confessed to the murder of Rafael Fuentes-a security guard found shot to death outside the Houston nightclub where he worked-but later pled not guilty and proceeded to trial. Texas indictments charged both Rocha and a co-defendant, Virgilio Maldonado, with capital murder, though each defendant was tried separately. A jury convicted Rocha and on its answer to the sentencing questions he was sentenced to death. State courts affirmed the conviction and sentence on direct review. Over the course of the next eight years, Rocha filed four state habeas applications and one federal habeas petition. All failed. The federal district court denied relief but held an evidentiary hearing and granted Rocha a certificate of appealability (“COA”) on his claim under Brady v. Maryland, a claim we now examine. Before this court Rocha also renews his request for a COA on two additional questions: whether he is entitled to review on the merits of his punishment-phase ineffective assistance of counsel claim under Wiggins v. Smith; and whether the state violated an individually-enforceable right under the Vienna Convention by failing to inform Rocha that he was entitled, as a Mexican citizen, to contact his country’s consulate. We affirm the district court, deny relief on Rocha’s Brady claim, and deny Rocha’s request for a COA on his claim under the Vienna Convention. We also hold that Rocha was not entitled to have a federal court review the merits of his Wiggins claim, but we grant his request for a COA on that question.

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