Update from Pollard Attorneys
January 5, 2004 - Israel Update
Helen Freedman & Charlie Bernhaut, co-hosts of cable TV's Israel Update, are pleased to announce that their interview with attorneys Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman, of the distinguished law firm Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle, will be seen on Monday, January 12, 7 P.M. program in Manhattan.
Lauer and Semmelman began doing pro-bono legal work for Jonathan Pollard in May, 2000, and have been working diligently on his behalf since then. Their most recent disappointment occurred in Sept. 2003, when their petition for access to the secret documents involved in the Pollard case was turned down, despite the fact that both men went through the process of getting top security clearance for such access. During the interview, it becomes clear that there are two procedural issues that need to be corrected in order to hope for Jonathan's release from prison, where he has spent the last 18 years.
The first issue is 'ineffective assistance of attorney' which carries indisputable evidence that Pollard's original attorney did not carry out the elementary procedural activities necessary to provide proper legal assistance.
The second one deals with the government's breach of the plea bargain entered into between Pollard and the government. The contract between the two, wherein Pollard gave up his right to a trial, in return for a promise from the government that there would be no life sentence, was broken when then U.S. Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberg submitted his 46 page document to the judge referring to Pollard as the worst of the offenders in the 'year of the spy'. Since John and Arthur Walker and Ronald Pelton had been sentenced to life imprisonment for spying for Russia, the inference was clearly that Pollard should get the same life sentence, and he did. The proper notice of appeal was never filed and so Jonathan Pollard remains in jail. The official nature of his crime, and the official detailing of the harm he caused, was never commensurate with the accusation of treason which Weinberger attached to him.
Attorneys Lauer and Semmelman ask that the public get involved with writing letters on behalf of Jonathan Pollard, and sending copies of those letters to them. That is important, so that when they go to Washington to plead the case, they can go armed with thousands of letters pleading Jonathan's case.
The letters should be addressed to:
Attorney General John Ashcroft
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20530
Also send letters to your Senators and
Finally, ask President George Bush to grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard. This letter should be addressed to:
President George Bush
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW.
Washington, DC 20500
More information can be gleaned from www.youngisrael.org. Go to the social action section. Select the section on Jonathan Pollard. Learn more about the case, and follow the directions for letter writing. Alternatively, go directly to the official website Justice4JP web site at jonathanpollard.org, and click the Information Page link.
Eliot Lauer may be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org; Jacques Semmelman may be contacted at: email@example.com. Their office address is: 101 Park Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10178-0061. Freedman and Bernhaut may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.