Pollard's Release Date Reverted From 'Life' to November 2015

Pollard's advocates say that parole is unlikely because the U.S. government continues to deny Pollard access to classified documents that could make his case.

JTA
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Photo Jonathan Pollard.
Jonathan Pollard during an interview at the Federal Correction Institution in Butner, North Carolina, May 15, 1998.Credit: AP
JTA
JTA

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons reverted to a November 2015 release date in its listing for convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard.

Pollard for several days had “Life” appear as his release date on the Federal Bureau of Prisons “find an inmate” search engine; it had previously been November 21, 2015, the date he is first eligible for parole under sentencing guidelines in 1987, when the former U.S. Navy analyst was sentenced to life for spying for Israel.

Being eligible for parole does not mean Pollard will be released and his advocates say that parole is unlikely because the U.S. government continues to deny Pollard access to classified documents that could make his case.

Pollard’s wife, Esther, said she and her husband preferred the life listing because the November 21, 2015 listing gave a false impression that mitigated against public pressure on President Obama to commute Pollard’s sentence.

On Monday night the list date reverted to November 21, 2015.

Ed Ross, a prisons bureau spokesman, told JTA that both decisions were “administrative,” in the sense that Pollard’s status had not changed, but added that he did not know if either decision – to change the listing to life and back again – was in error.

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