Jonathan Pollard to Appeal Federal Court's Ruluing on Parole Requirements

Pollard's plans to argue that the parole requirements are arbitrary and Pollard poses no security risk, since he has not had access to classified government information for more than three decades.

Convicted spy Jonathan Pollard (left) and his lawyer, Eliot Lauer, leave federal court in New York following a hearing, July 22, 2016.
Larry Neumeister, AP

Jonathan Pollard’s attorney announced plans to appeal a federal court’s ruling not to lift the restrictive parole conditions on the convicted spy for Israel.

On Tuesday, Eliot Lauer said he would file a notice of appeal over the Aug. 12 decision in Manhattan District Court.

In his appeal, Lauer plans to argue that the parole requirements are arbitrary and Pollard poses no security risk, since he has not had access to classified government information for more than three decades.

The parole terms issued upon Pollard’s release from a federal prison last November after serving 30 years of a life sentence require him to stay in his New York home from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.; to submit any computer he uses for inspection, and to wear a GPS-monitoring device at all times. The device means that Pollard, who is Orthodox, is forced to violate Shabbat observance, his lawyer said. He also must remain in the United States for five years, despite his desire to move to Israel.

In her ruling, Judge Katherine Forrest ruled that the U.S. Parole Commission had a rational basis for imposing the stringent parole conditions, noting Pollard’s expressed desire to leave the United States for Israel, where his wife lives and where he was granted citizenship while in prison.

She also noted that the commission also had reviewed a letter from the U.S. director of national intelligence, James Clapper, stating that documents Pollard had compromised remain classified at the levels of “top secret” and “secret.”

Pollard, 62, 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 civilian intelligence specialist for the U.S. Navy.