Jonathan Pollard
Jonathan Pollard Reuters

Israel officially asked the US to allow former Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard to immigrate to Israel three years after his release from prison, but the United States Department of Justice refused, according to a report Wednesday in Hadashot 2.

Pollard served as an analyst for the US Navy in the 1980s, during which time he was recruited by Israeli intelligence to collect information on Israel’s behalf regarding regional threats.

In 1985, Pollard was discovered by US law enforcement officials, and after seeking asylum at the Israeli embassy in Washington, was turned over to the FBI.

Given a life sentence in November 1985, Pollard was paroled 30 years later in November 2015 under severely restrictive conditions.

According to the report, in parallel with efforts in the political arena, Israel also acted on the bureaucratic level and submitted an official request to the US Justice Department to allow Pollard to be brought to justice in Israel in a regulated agreement between the two countries.

Recently, Israel received a response in which the Department rejected the Israeli request, claiming that Pollard's crimes were too serious to allow him to leave the US.

The request to consider Pollard's age and his precarious health was also rejected.

The Prime Minister's Office said in response that "Prime Minister Netanyahu remains committed to bringing Pollard back to Israel."