US Judge Dismisses Motion for Resentencing Pollard

Jerusalem Post Staff - Jerusalem Post - August 17, 2001

United States District Judge Norma Holloway has dismissed a motion for resentencing Jonathan Pollard on procedural grounds, his new attorneys, Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman, disclosed yesterday.

The motion for resentencing was based on the argument of ineffective counsel before, during, and immediately after Pollard was sentenced to life in prison on March 4, 1987, the attorneys said. Pollard was given the maximum sentence after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit espionage.

Lauer and Semmelman maintained that Pollard was ineffectively represented by his attorney at the time, who failed to object to the fact that the government was breaching its plea bargain agreement when it demanded a life sentence after it had promised not to do so. The attorney then failed to appeal Pollard's life sentence.

The court order dismissed the resentencing motion on procedural grounds and did not consider the merits of the case. It ruled that a 1996 statute created a one-year period of limitations in which to file any post-sentencing motion based on deprivation of constitutional rights, such as the Sixth Amendment, which guaranteed right to effective assistance of counsel.

Lauer and Semmelman argued that they began to represent Pollard in May 2000 and filed their motion well within one year of that time. They said Pollard did not know of his rights until advised by his new attorneys and that given the fact he spent six years in solitary confinement, he could not have known about them earlier.

The attorneys said they would appeal the ruling, as well as one denying access to some 40 pages of classified documents.

For details see media release August 15, 2001:
On Procedural Grounds U.S. District Court Dismisses Pollard's Motion for Resentencing - J4JP Media Release

See Also: