Pollard Attorneys Renew Appeal for Clemency

Justice4JP Release - December 15, 2000

December 11, 2000

President William Clinton
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20502-0001

Re: Request for Clemency for Jonathan Pollard

Dear Mr. President:

We are attorneys for Jonathan Pollard. We write to request, most respectfully, that you grant Mr. Pollard executive clemency and that you commute his sentence to time served. Mr. Pollard has just completed his fifteenth year in prison.

We know that you are generally familiar with Mr. Pollard's case. We have presented your staff with detailed documentation that we submit warrants executive clemency.

Briefly stated, despite pleading guilty and cooperating extensively with the government, Mr. Pollard was sentenced to life in prison. We have been able to document serious government misconduct that went unchecked by Mr. Pollard's then-counsel. As a result of that misconduct, and as a result of his attorney's ineffectiveness, Mr. Pollard was sentenced to life in prison on the basis of false allegations, and under circumstances that violated his plea agreement. He was then deprived of any opportunity to secure appellate review of his life sentence because that same attorney failed to file a Notice of Appeal.

In light of the egregious government misconduct, coupled with ineffective representation that allowed that misconduct to go unchecked, we respectfully submit that fundamental fairness warrants commutation of Mr. Pollard's sentence.

We have researched the sentences imposed on persons who have been convicted of having spied for friendly countries. We enclose a chart we have prepared, based upon that research. None of the sentences comes close to the life sentence imposed on Mr. Pollard. Indeed, Mr. Pollard has already served more time than any of these convicted spies served or will ever have to serve.

Mr. Pollard has expressed his deep remorse for what he did. He has done so to us, and he has done so many times in the past both publicly and privately. We enclose, as part of this request, a letter directly from Mr. Pollard to you, Mr. President, in which he again expresses his sincere remorse. We also enclose previous letters from Mr. Pollard in which he has unequivocally expressed his sorrow for what he has done.

In these final days of your administration, and in the spirit of the upcoming holiday season, we respectfully urge you to grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard and to commute his sentence to time served.


Eliot Lauer
Jacques Semmelman

See Also:
  • Jonathan Pollard's Statement of Remorse and Appeal for Clemency
  • The Attorneys' Comparative Sentence Chart
  • Remorse Page