Judge orders review of Pollard's parole conditions

American judge says Parole Commission provided little basis to justify Pollard's parole conditions, orders review.

Ben Ariel ,

Jonathan Pollard
Jonathan Pollard

A judge on Monday ordered a federal commission to provide further justification for subjecting Jonathan Pollard to restrictive probation conditions following his release last month from prison after 30 years, Reuters reports.

According to the news agency, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan said the Parole Commission had provided little basis to justify why Pollard must wear an electronic bracelet and have his work computer monitored.

She ordered the Parole Commission to in particular assess whether it believed that Pollard still possessed confidential information.

"If there is secret information Jonathan Pollard could disclose, then restrictive conditions could be necessary," Forrest said, according to Reuters.

If Pollard does not have such information, the judge continued, his conditions may need to be modified. Forrest called her decision to send Pollard's case back to the commission for further review "the first step, and I think this is the right step."

Pollard’s lawyers appealed the terms of his probation on the day of his release, saying the electronic bracelet's use unjustified, and noting the computer conditions would prevent him from taking an investment firm job.

Eliot Lauer, Pollard's lawyer, said in court no one had ever suggested any information his client had remained sensitive three decades later.

The Justice Department argued the strict conditions were "reasonably related" to the circumstances underlying Pollard's crime to ensure among other things that he does not disseminate classified information.

Rebecca Tinio, a Justice Department lawyer, said the "majority of the information Mr. Pollard had 30 years ago remains classified."