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Life sentence maintained for convicted spy



Published: Sat, July 23, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



WASHINGTON (AP) -- Convicted spy Jonathan Pollard lost another round Friday in his long-shot effort to overturn his life sentence for selling military secrets to Israel while working as an intelligence analyst for the Navy.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that Pollard waited too long to try to contest his 1987 sentence and rejected his claim that he was a victim of poor legal advice.

The court also said it had no authority to review Pollard's request to see classified documents the Reagan administration submitted to the judge who imposed the sentence 18 years ago. Pollard's lawyers said the material was critical to his appeal and any request for presidential clemency.

Pollard's attorney, Eliot Lauer, said he was "very disappointed" with the opinion and may file a request for rehearing from the full appeals court or appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"We hope that in time the American judicial system will give Jonathan Pollard his rightful day in court and that justice will be done," Lauer said.

The Justice Department declined to comment on the ruling.

Pollard, who turns 51 next month, was a civilian intelligence analyst for the Navy when he copied and gave thousands of classified documents to his Israeli handlers. He was not paid when his spying began in 1984, but acknowledged that Israel later began paying him a few thousand dollars a month.




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