Pollard’s Lawyer: Despite Reports, No Word Yet On Jonathan’s Release


jonathan pollardJonathan Pollard’s attorney says that despite reports about him being released on parole, the Feds have given no indication that this will happen.

Matzav.com had first reported on Friday that Pollard, who has been incarcerated for 30 years, is expected to be released on parole, according to sources.

In order for Pollard to be released, a Notice of Action must first be issued, and presumably it is Pollard’s legal team which would receive it first. Attorney Eliot Lauer, Pollards, lawyer, says that no such Notice of Action has been received.

Lauer said that authorities could issue such a notice shortly before Pollard’s release date.

Pollard is serving a life sentence under a federal law which allows the possibility of parole. He is the only American citizen who has been sentenced to life in prison for passing classified information to a US ally. Israeli government officials, activists, and even members of Congress have pressed successive US administrations for Pollard’s release.

There have been multiple false starts and reports over the years indicating that Pollard’s release was imminent.

In August 2014, a request by Pollard for parole was denied, with the officials arguing that releasing Pollard would “constitute contempt for the severity of the offense and promote a lack of respect for the law.”

In response, a number of former high-level US officials – including former CIA director Amb. R. James Woolsey, and former assistant US secretary of defense Lawrence J. Korb – wrote a strongly worded letter to President Barack Obama denouncing the “unjust denial” of Pollard’s request.

Pollard, born August 7, 1954, was a United States government employee who pleaded guilty in 1987 to selling classified information to Israel while working as a civilian intelligence analyst and was sentenced to life in prison. Because his offenses were committed prior to November 1987, he is eligible for parole as early as November 2015.

American and Israeli activist groups, and American politicians have all seen his punishment as unfair and have lobbied continuously for reduction or commutation of his sentence.

Since the arrest, Israel has made repeated attempts through both official and unofficial channels to secure Pollard’s release, but without success. Israel granted Pollard Israeli citizenship in 1995.

Pollard was tried and convicted in November 1985, in what amounted to a less than fair trial. Pollard, who passed information to Israel, an openly declared ally and not an enemy state, received the same sentence as John Walker, Robert Hansson, and Aldrich Ames, all of whom notoriously betrayed their country by selling top U.S. secrets to the Soviet Union for money. Not only did they endanger U.S. security in the process, but they claimed the lives of many U.S. agents. The eagerness of then-Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberger to punish Pollard — a U.S. Navy intelligence analyst — was unprecedented in such cases.

Today, some 30 years into his imprisonment, Pollard’s health has deteriorated, and he is suffering kidney failure and gallbladder complications.

{Andy Heller-Matzav.com Newscenter}