The petitioner seeks vacatur of his federal conviction under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Although he previously filed a § 2255 motion that was dismissed as untimely, he contends that the current motion shouldn’t be considered successive because it’s based on newly discovered facts that were not known at the time of the earlier motion.
Courts have distinguished between petitions containing claims, the factual predicate of which came into being after the first habeas petition and those containing claims that were ripe at the conclusion of a first habeas proceeding but weren’t discovered until afterward. Here, the factual predicate underlying the petitioner’s claim — the government’s failure to disclose potentially exculpatory or impeachment evidence — accrued before he filed his first motion, even though he was unaware of this. Consistent with the weight of authority, the court believes that this is precisely the type of situation that § 2255(h)’s successive-motion rule was designed to address.
Thus, the petitioner may pursue his claim only if he obtains authorization from the 4th Circuit. The fact that he is nearing the end of his federal sentence does not allow the court to short-circuit statutory gatekeeping requirements.