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New York - US Court Urged To Relax Convicted Israeli Spy's Parole Conditions

Published on: May 17, 2017 03:15 PM
By: Reuters
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Jonathan Pollard, a former U.S. Navy intelligence officer convicted of spying for Israel, exits following a hearing at the Manhattan Federal Courthouse in New York City, U.S., May 17, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermidJonathan Pollard, a former U.S. Navy intelligence officer convicted of spying for Israel, exits following a hearing at the Manhattan Federal Courthouse in New York City, U.S., May 17, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

New York - A lawyer for Jonathan Pollard, a former U.S. Navy intelligence officer who served 30 years in prison after being convicted of spying for Israel, on Wednesday urged a U.S. appeals court to loosen his parole conditions.

Lawyer Eliot Lauer argued to a three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan that the conditions, which require Pollard, 62, to wear an electronic tracking device, adhere to a curfew and submit his computers to monitoring, serve no legitimate purpose.

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Pollard, who attended the hearing with his wife, pleaded guilty in 1986 to conspiracy to commit espionage in connection with providing Israeli contacts with hundreds of classified documents he had obtained as a naval intelligence specialist in exchange for thousands of dollars.

He was sentenced in 1987 to life in prison. After serving 30 years, which included time in custody following his 1985 arrest, Pollard was released on parole on Nov. 20.

He now lives in New York City, and his lawyers say his parole conditions have prevented him from having a job.

As part of his parole, Pollard must remain in the United States for five years. He has sought to move to Israel, where his wife lives and where he was granted citizenship while in prison. Israel had long pushed for his release.

Lauer said Wednesday there was no rational basis for the government to think Pollard “might retain details in his head about documents created 32 to 33 years ago” that he could disclose.

Circuit Judge Reena Raggi, however, pressed Lauer to explain why Pollard’s crime was not enough to justify the conditions.

“Why is it the government’s obligation to take the chance that he’s forgotten something and it pops into his mind, or he does retain it?” she asked.

Lauer responded that there must be some rational basis for the government’s position.

Rebecca Tinio, a lawyer for the government, said the conditions imposed by the U.S. parole commission were “well within in its broad discretion.”

Tinio also emphasized the “enormous harm to the United States” Pollard caused, noting that former U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper had submitted a letter stating that documents compromised by Pollard remained highly classified.

“We’re optimistic,” Lauer told reporters after the argument. “I think it went well. I thought the court understood the issues, and I have great faith in American justice.”



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Read Comments (6)  —  Post Yours »

1

 May 17, 2017 at 03:26 PM ELEPHANT Says:

Let him go

2

 May 17, 2017 at 04:51 PM Anonymous Says:

Chelsea Manning is released today after being pardoned by Obama,& Pollard is still on a leash !!!!

3

 May 17, 2017 at 09:35 PM PaulinSaudi Says:

He did it. He did it on purpose. He did it for money. He does not seem to have anything in his background such as mental illness that would inspire mercy. He does not even seem sorry for what he did. If we let him go he will go to another country and collect a big paycheck.

4

 May 17, 2017 at 11:22 PM Mendelowitz Says:

To #3- Your friends, the Saudis, have brainwashed you. It is an absolute lie, that the Israelis have set up an account for Pollard to collect, when he goes there. Who told you that Pollard never expressed any remorse? He was physically and mentally abused in prison, and was kept in solitary confinement for years. His first wife, Anne Pollard also underwent physical and mental abuse in prison, as a way to get back at him. Other spies who did it for the money (whom you conveniently forgot to mention), served far less time in prison. For example, there was a U.S. Marine, who was stationed in Moscow, who gave military secrets to the Russians; that Marine served less than nine years; Chelsea Manning served seven years, plus still enjoys enormous medical benefits. Pollard on the other hand, has bupkis. He has to walk up five flights of stairs, as there is no elevator in his one bedroom apartment. It is ludicrous to have him electronically monitored 24/7. Even his parole officers stated that in over 30 years, they've never seen a first time, non-violent offender treated in such a shabby manner. Next time, check your facts, before expounding your unfounded and unsubstantiated allegations.

5

 May 18, 2017 at 11:24 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #3  
PaulinSaudi Says:

He did it. He did it on purpose. He did it for money. He does not seem to have anything in his background such as mental illness that would inspire mercy. He does not even seem sorry for what he did. If we let him go he will go to another country and collect a big paycheck.

You know what "PaulinSaudi" since you have nothing intelligent to say in this case, just keep quiet.

6

 May 19, 2017 at 08:45 AM PaulinSaudi Says:

I am sure you're both right. Can you provide me to a link showing his remorse? Let him stay in the US away from the money he earned.

7

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