US: Letter urging Pollard’s release circulated in Congress

WASHINGTON -  A letter is being circulated in the US House of Representatives urging President Obama to commute Jonathan Pollard's life sentence to time served.
"Mr. Pollard has now served 25 years in prison, many of which in solitary confinement, for his actions," says the letter circulated by Reps. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.). "There is no doubt that he paid a heavy price and, from the standpoint of either punishment or deterrence, we believe he has been imprisoned long enough."
The letter has so far garnered 40 signatories, mostly from Democrats, but with an increasing number of Republicans.
Pollard, a former US Navy analyst arrested in 1986, was given a life sentence in 1987 for spying for Israel. In recent years, Pollard, 58, has suffered illnesses and has occasionally been hospitalized.
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