Skip to comments.Convicted Spy Pollard Loses Appeal
Posted on 07/22/2005 10:31:25 AM PDT by Tumbleweed_Connection
A federal appeals court Friday rejected convicted spy Jonathan Pollard's latest effort to reduce the life sentence he received for selling military secrets to Israel while working as an intelligence analyst for the Navy.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that Pollard waited too long to try to contest his 1987 sentence and failed to make a convincing case that he got poor legal help.
The court also ruled that it had no authority to review Pollard's request to see secret documents the Reagan administration submitted to the judge who imposed the sentence 18 years ago.
Pollard's lawyers said they needed to see the material to rebut government arguments against any new appeal or against a request for presidential clemency.
Pollard faulted his original lawyer for not filing a notice of appeal in 1986 when the government, according to Pollard's lawyers, in effect sought a term of life imprisonment after promising it would not do so.
Writing for a three-judge panel, Judge David Sentelle rejected as "nonsensical" the argument that Pollard did not realize the alleged mistake by his lawyer at the time.
"Pollard knew the facts," Sentelle said. "What he now claims not to have known is the legal significance of these facts."
Eliot Lauer, Pollard's attorney, said he was "very disappointed" with the opinion and may file a request for rehearing from the full appeals court or seek appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
"We hope that in time the American judicial system will give Jonathan Pollard his rightful day in court and that justice will be done," Lauer said.
The legal challenge to Pollard's sentence was always viewed as a long shot, and his supporters have focused much of their effort on winning presidential clemency.
Pollard, who turns 51 next month, was a civilian intelligence analyst for the Navy when he copied and gave to his Israeli handlers enough classified documents to fill a walk-in closet. He was not paid when his spying began in 1984, but acknowledged that Israel later began paying him a few thousand dollars a month.
He was caught in November 1985 and arrested after unsuccessfully seeking refuge at the Israeli embassy. Pollard initially denied he worked for Israel but later acknowledged it. He claims prosecutors reneged on a promise to seek a lesser sentence in return for his cooperation.
His case has been a sticking point in U.S.-Israeli relations. The Israeli government, which granted Pollard citizenship, repeatedly has pressed for his release.
Lauer said Pollard does not have a formal request for clemency pending with the Bush administration. Federal officials reviewed his case in 2000, but he was left off the list of those granted clemency just before President Clinton left office.
"The court also ruled that it had no authority to review Pollard's request to see secret documents the Reagan administration submitted to the judge who imposed the sentence 18 years ago."
Another well-fed felon.
Good. Let him rot.
But think of the money we are saving on hair cuts.
Talk about making MY day....
At this point, he will be held in custody longer than any spy who gave info to the Soviets. Is there really any justification for imposing a harsher sentence on someone
for giving info to Israel, than for giving into to Russia?
(I mean, you can give info to China--like Bill Clinton--and not even do any time at all. . .)
The justification is that he committed a crime, violated the great trust placed in him by others, and has been sentenced in accordance with Federal law. The relative length of others' sentences is a mistake, they should also spend their lives behind bars.
He he... good luck with that.
Lauer said Pollard does not have a formal request for clemency pending with the Bush administration. Federal officials reviewed his case in 2000, but he was left off the list of those granted clemency just before President Clinton left office
Now if he got left off that list, he really might want to think about what his chances really are of EVER getting a presidential pardon.
You have a good point. Release him from prison like the Julius and Ethyl Rosenberg were.
True. Pollard has been held longer than the Rosenbergs, who were executed. If there had been a federal death penalty at the time, he would have been a likely candidate.
His case has been a sticking point in U.S.-Israeli relations.
Okay, let them buy him out.
$5-billion x 20 yrs we have been paying Israel = $100 Billion
Spies for the Russians weren't released for their benefit. They were usually traded to the Russians for American spies which were caught. Thus the Russians had something of value to trade. Maybe if Israel had something to offer for Pollard we could consider it. Instead they just send us another $2 billion bill for "our part" of them leaving Gaza.
actually that was very funny. ;)
No. Giving info to Russia - or China - should get you an equally long sentence.