Jonathan Pollard who spied for Israel, is now “ free to travel anywhere, including Israel, for temporary or permanent residence, as he wishes.” as the U.S. Parole Commission has issued a certificate terminating parole. Per a Statement from his attorneys.
This move culminates an extraordinary espionage case that occasionally complicated American-Israeli relations over 30 years.
Pollard’s attorneys provided the following statement and message from Jonathan:
Mr. Pollard is no longer subject to a curfew, is no longer prohibited from working for a company that does not have U.S. government monitoring software on its computer systems, is no longer required to wear a wrist monitor that tracks his whereabouts, and is free to travel anywhere, including Israel, for temporary or permanent residence, as he wishes.
During the past five years, since his release on parole from federal prison, Mr. Pollard has been subject to these U.S. government restrictions. We are grateful and delighted that our client is finally free of any restrictions, and is now a free man in all respects. We look forward to seeing our client in Israel.
Mr. Pollard was released on parole November 21, 2015. He had been in prison since November 21, 1985, serving a sentence of life in prison for conspiracy to deliver classified information to the State of Israel.
Over the past several months, we have communicated with the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Parole Commission, emphasizing that Mr. Pollard has had an exemplary record, both as a prisoner and as a parolee, and that there is every reason for confidence that he will be a model citizen after his parole restrictions are lifted.
Mr. Pollard has asked us to communicate the following on his behalf:
- Pollard is happy to finally be able to assist his beloved wife Esther, who is fighting an aggressive form of cancer. Mr. Pollard would like people to know that it was his wife, more than anyone else, who kept him alive during all the years he was in prison.
- Pollard is deeply grateful to his longstanding pro bono lawyers Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman, and their law firm Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP, who have stood by him for so many years, and whose perseverance, creativity, and forceful advocacy were instrumental in securing his release from prison on parole, and the lifting of the parole restrictions.
- Pollard is also extremely thankful to Rabbi Pesach Lerner, who has worked tirelessly for many years on Mr. Pollard’s behalf, and to the generous contributors who have assisted financially during the past five years, as the U.S. government placed insurmountable impediments on Mr. Pollard’s ability to earn a living.
- Pollard expresses appreciation and gratitude to Ambassador Ron Dermer, acting under the auspices of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, for their efforts on his behalf.
- Pollard thanks Dov Friedberg for his longstanding support and friendship; Israeli attorneys Larry Dub and Nitsana Dirshan-Leitner for their devoted pro bono representation over many years; and Adi Ginsberg, Rabbi Asher Mivtzari, and all the volunteers under their direction for their unrelenting work in Israel on Mr. Pollard’s behalf.
- Pollard expresses his deepest respect and heartfelt thanks to the late Chief Rabbi, His Honor Rav Mordechai Eliyahu zt”l, and to his entire family, as well as to his Chief of Staff Rav Chaim Suissa, for providing spiritual guidance and strength to Jonathan and Esther Pollard from the outset of the case, and whose friendship remains strong and vibrant.
- Pollard is deeply grateful to so many others in the U.S., Israel, and around the world who have helped devotedly. They are too numerous to mention by name, but they include: Andrew Brooke, Goldi Steiner, Risha Balter and Nomi Winkler of Toronto; Bella Amiram and Naomi Knobel of Jerusalem; and in the U.S., the late Chaim Stern, attorneys Kenneth Lasson and Gary Apfel, and the late Judge George Leighton. Finally, Mr. Pollard thanks all people of good will who have kept him in their prayers and hoped for this day.
Pollard, a former Navy intelligence analyst, was arrested on Nov. 21, 1985, after trying unsuccessfully to gain asylum at the Israeli Embassy in Washington. He had earlier drawn the suspicion of a supervisor for handling large amounts of classified materials unrelated to his official duties.
U.S. officials have said Pollard, over a series of months and for a salary, provided intelligence summaries and huge quantities of classified documents on the capabilities and programs of Israel’s enemies. He pleaded guilty in 1986 to conspiracy to commit espionage and was given a life sentence a year later.
Though he has said his guilty plea was coerced, he has also expressed regret, telling The Associated Press in a 1998 interview that he did not consider himself a hero.
“There is nothing good that came as a result of my actions,” he said. “I tried to serve two countries at the same time. That does not work.”
Under sentencing rules in place at the time of his crime, he became presumptively eligible for parole in November — 30 years after his arrest. The Justice Department agreed not to oppose parole at a July hearing that took into account his behavior in prison and likelihood to commit future crimes.
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