Clinton Pledges to Consider Request for Pollard Clemency

President Clinton has renewed his campaign pledge to consider the case of Jonathan Pollard, the former U.S. Navy analyst now serving a life sentence for passing military secrets to Israel.

Responding to a letter requesting clemency for Pollard, sent by Abe Plotkin of Scranton, Pa., Clinton wrote that he was waiting for the Justice Department to review the case and recommend a course of action.

“Once I receive their recommendation, I will give consideration to all the relevant facts in order to make a fair and just determination,” the president wrote.

Pollard, who is currently serving time at a federal penitentiary in Butner, N.C., first filed for commutation of his sentence in December 1992. Outgoing President Bush turned down the request the day before Clinton took office.

A new petition was quickly filed, well before the new administration began the slow process of naming a new attorney general.

His choice, Janet Reno, is regarded as sympathetic to many Jewish concerns. But she is also a strong believer in law and order, and it is not known how she would come down on the Pollard case.