Judge OKs Bail for Former Iowa Slaughterhouse CEO

By Dave Franzman, Reporter

(Cliff Jette/The Gazette)

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By Becky Ogann

CEDAR RAPIDS - A former top executive at Agriprocessors in Postville could be released from jail as early as Thursday morning. Sholom Rubashkin was ordered jailed by federal authorities back in November because he was considered a flight risk.

Rubashkin was charged with a number of federal immigration and bank fraud charges stemming from a raid at the meatpacking plant in Postville last May.

Federal Judge Linda Reade agreed Tuesday morning that Rubashkin can be released from jail pending his trial, now set to begin in September. However the release order came with a number of conditions.

Rubashkin's family must come up with a $500,000 commercial bond and surrender all family passports, including any obtained by children. He will be placed on electronic monitoring and cannot travel outside Allamakee County, where Postville is located, without permission.

The government has until Thursday morning to protest this release from detention. However, late Tuesday the U.S. Attorney's office filed paperwork indicating there would be no appeal of Rubashkin's release.

At this point, Rubashkin is scheduled to be released from the Dubuque County Jail where he was placed on federal detention. Family members at the Cedar Rapids hearing Tuesday morning expressed relief and joy at the decision.

When asked what's the first thing he would do Thursday morning, Getzel Rubashkin, the defendant's son, said "give him a hug and a kiss and tell him I love him and spend some family time for the first time in a couple of months."

Sholom Rubashkin's trial is currently set to begin September 8th in Cedar Rapids. His attorneys say they still have a few more days to decide on a change of venue request that could move the trial elsewhere.

“We are very grateful for the beautiful outpouring of good wishes and prayers from all around the world. It means so much to Sholom and I to know that we have this continuous spiritual strength behind us during these times,” said Mrs. Rubashkin after the decision.

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