Pastor Enoch Adeboye writes Barack Obama to free Jonathan Pollard

Digital Journal - November 8, 2011

The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, has written a letter to President Barack Obama, asking him to commute the life sentence of the Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard, to the time he has served.

The Jerusalem Post reports that Pastor Adeboye's letter to the U.S. president comes as part of a growing global effort to secure release of the Israeli agent from an American prison by having his life sentence commuted to the 26 years he has served.

Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, recently named among the top 50 world's most powerful men by Newsweek, in his letter to Barack Obama, said:

"I humbly request that the remainder of Jonathan Pollard's sentence is commuted in the interest of justice."

Pastor Enoch Adeboye's The Redeemed Christian Church of God with headquarters in Ebute Meta, Lagos, Nigeria, has over 14,000 branches in 110 countries and has more than five million members in Nigeria alone.

Many other influential African and African-Americans have been involved in the effort to secure the Israeli's release. The Jerusalem Post reports former New York's mayor and professor in the Practice of Public Affairs at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs David Dinkins, also recently wrote to President Obama complaining that Pollard was not allowed to attend the funeral of his father who died in June. Other African-Americans who have written Obama include Harvard Law professor Charles Ogletree, who was professor of both Barack and Michelle Obama at Harvard; Congressman John Lewis of Georgia; former executive director of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Benjamin Hook, and Rabbi Capers Funye of Chicago, Michelle Obama's first cousin.

Professor David Dinkins in his letter, said:

"I write to join the many Americans and humanitarians worldwide who are calling upon you to exercise your power of clemency to commute Jonathan Pollard's prison sentence to time served...I first recommended that president Clinton consider such action in 1993, and, that failing, now find it necessary to appeal to you." reports that a bipartisan group of former 18 U.S. Senators has also asked for President Obama's clemency. In their letter dated October 26, the Senators said:

"We do not condone espionage, nor do we underestimate the gravity of Pollard's crime...But it is patently clear that Mr. Pollard's sentence is severely disproportionate and (as several federal judges have noted) a gross miscarriage of justice."

The letter cites Pollard's ill-health:

"After more than two decades in the harshest prison conditions, Mr. Pollard's health is declining...He has repeatedly expressed remorse for his actions as has the State of Israel, and by all accounts has served as a model prisoner." reports that Jonathan Pollard is serving a life sentence in a federal prison for passing classified U.S. information to Israel. Legal experts have noted that the "median sentence for this offense is 2 to 4 years," but Pollard was given a life sentence. also notes that, "No one else in the history of the United States has ever received a life sentence for this offense."

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