Pollard Calls For Sentence Review

Middle East News Line March 16, 1999

JERUSALEM [MENL] -- Jonathan Pollard has again called on the White House to review his life sentence -- this time in wake of the sentencing of a National Security Agency analyst convicted of spying for the Soviet Union.

In a letter to White House counsel Charles Ruff, Pollard's attorney, Larry Dub referred to the 24-year prison sentence imposed on David Sheldon Boone, the former NSA cryptologic traffic analyst recently convicted of spying for the Soviet Union (in the 1980's).

Dub, a Jerusalem attorney, said Boone's activities of providing the Soviets with U.S. signals collections systems was attributed to Pollard, the U.S. Naval intelligence analyst who spied for Israel in the early 1980s. Pollard has already served 14 years in prison.

The attorney said the charges against Boone were more serious than those levelled against Pollard. Still, Dub said, Boone drew a lighter sentence.

"If the guidelines applied in the Boone case are any standard to go by, Pollard's life sentence violates all standards of equal treatment and proportional justice," Dub wrote.

U.S. President Bill Clinton said he is reviewing Pollard's life sentence. Israeli diplomatic sources said they are skeptical whether Clinton will announce a decision over the next few months -- this, in an attempt to stay out of Israel's national elections, scheduled for May 17.

A similar letter written by Dub to Ruff on Jan. 13 has still not been answered.