Pollard's Attorney Tells Clinton Media Charges Are False

Middle East Newsline - Steve Rodan - January 13, 1999

JERUSALEM [MENL] -- The attorney of Jonathan Pollard, convicted of passing U.S. secrets to Israel, has renewed his call to the White House to detail exactly what his client did to deserve a life sentence.

Attorney Larry Dub renewed his request for an urgent meeting with White House legal counsel Charles Ruff to discuss the Pollard case. A similar request made in December was ignored, Dub said.

"It strikes me as particularly un-American to allow U.S. officials to try my client in the court of public opinion via the media, without ever allowing him to see the evidence against him or to face his accusers and defend himself," Dub wrote. "May I point out that Mr. Clinton himself is insisting on these very rights in his own case. It is therefore puzzling that such basic consideration has not yet been extended by Mr. Clinton to my client."

The latest letter comes as Clinton is receiving recommendations from senior officials on a proposal from the Justice Department to reduce Pollard's sentence to 25 years

*[Bogus deal! See Urgent Media Release.

] Several officials, including Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Defense Secretary William Cohen and CIA director George Tenet have opposed any reduction in his sentence. In his letter Dub criticized government leaks regarding the review of Pollard. He said the allegations that his client harmed U.S. security is false.

Dub referred to New Yorker magazine that asserted that Pollard handed Israel a 10 volume codes manual that gravely damaged US intelligence collection systems. The attorney said court records show that Pollard was accused of relaying a manual of frequencies and signals without their encryption codes, which he says was useless.

Dub said that one-third of these manuals were given to Israel by Washington. "If, as 'government officials' now claim, this manual was so dangerous for Israel to have, why were they giving it to Israel officially in the first place?" he asked. U.S. government sources expect Clinton to delay any decision in the current review of Pollard.