Solidarity needed for Anti-Fascist prisoner Jock Palfreeman
Jock Palfreeman is a 24 year old Australian who, on the 27th of December 2007,
had the courage to stand up against 16 fascist hooligans on a night out in Sofia, Bulgaria.
He witnessed the fascists chasing and attacking two young Roma boys. Jock ran to
the boys’ aid, he did his best to keep the fascists at bay by waving a knife at
them but they attacked him. Jock was left with nowhere to run and had no choice
but to defend himself. Andrey Monov, one of the racist gang, was stabbed and killed
and another, Anton Zahariev was injured. The Roma boys ran away.
Jock has since been tried and sentenced for murder and attempted murder. He has
been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment and has been fined 375,000 Australian
dollars. Jock has spent much of the time he has already served in isolation due
to a legal loop hole used by the prison authorities.
Andrey Monovs father is well known in Bulgaria and at the funeral there were a
mixture of judges, police and politicians. Jocks trial was (not surprisingly) a
complete sham – yet another example of corruption and secret handshakes in the
judicial system. The prosecutions case was built on the witness statements made
by the other Nazis that were there that night, all claiming that Jock randomly
attacked the group and chased them with the intent of killing somebody. Key
people and possible witnesses for Jocks defence were never interviewed by police
and the CCTV footage from the scene miraculously went missing. Many of the
statements made at the time were not the same as the statements submitted to the
court by the prosecution.
Jocks statement has remained consistent from the night in question.
You can read Jocks official statement at www.freejock.com You can also watch a
documentary about his case that contains interviews with Jock at the following
Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8rLrOW1g1k&feature=related
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HdhA9UzRGqo&feature=related
Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NRJF5x-D0&feature=related
Jock appealed against his sentence and few court hearings took place between October 2010 and January 2011. Despite police officers confirming his version of events, one of the fascists making totally incoherent statements in court trying to explain why he changed his original testimony , mounting evidence of judicial errors during the initial trial and all other factors pointing to his innocence his sentence of 20 years was upheld. (For Jocks statement about this please go to: http://anarchistsolidarity.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/jocks-sentence-upheld-after-an-appeal )
Jock now lost all the appeals and only one left to him is to appeal to European Union Court in Strasbourg. He is also trying to secure his transfer to Australia which proves difficult as Bulgarian prosecution service seems to be determined to keep him imprisoned in Bulgaria.
It is now more important than ever that we collectively put as much pressure on
the Bulgarian authorities as possible to accept Jocks transfer. We are in it for the long run- we need to let Jock now that he is not alone in his struggle and any solidarity actions can go long way to assure that. There will be Week of Actions organised at some point in March but we need to build up for that with protest messages being sent continuously as well and awareness being raised about the Jock’s case.
The more creative the actions the better. Don’t let Bulgarian state bury this courageous man alive in prison! Don’t let them think that they can get away with it!
Another important aspect is, especially for people in Australia , to keep pressure on their authorities to do something in Jocks case and officially demand his transfer as well.
If you are short of ideas why not try one of the following;
Organize solidarity actions outside Bulgarian Embassies and Consulates etc.
(for a list of the Bulgarian Embassies and Consulates please see,
Phone the Bulgarian Embassies and Consulates with your protests.
Help us to bombard the Bulgarian Authorities with letters of protest and
requests for Jocks appeal to be accepted. It is also vital that we we send as many protest messages to prosecutors directly responsible for blocking his transfer.
(please see below for a list of addresses).
If you want us to help promote your events send us the details at
Ideally protest letters are best written in your own words BUT we have provided
a sample letter (attached) that can be sent if you do not want to write your
own. Just print it out, sign it and post it, it’s as simple as that. Feel free to
reprint it and distribute it to anyone you think may send a copy.
We need to get the pressure up and
keep it up.
Addresses to post, fax and email your letters of protest to:
No.2 Vitosha blvd
phone no: +359 28051500
No.2 Vitosha blvd
phone no: +359 28051500
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Bulgaria
Address: 2 Aleksander Zhendov Str
Tel: +359 2 948 2999
http://www.mfa.bg/en/contact/ (ready form for sending messages from their website, very helpful)
Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria LONDON
186-188 Queen’s Gate
London SW7 5HL
Tel.: (0044) (0) 207 584 9400, (0) 207 584 9433
Fax: (0044) (0) 207 584 4948
Information, Public Relations and European Communication Directorate
Director: Sofia Vladimirova
Tel: +359 2 971 1408. OR +359 2 971 3778. OR +359 2 948 2218.
Fax: +359 2 870 3041
Ministry’s Reception Desk
Tel: +359 2 948 2018 OR +359 2 971 1054
(opening hrs 09.30 – 12.00 and 14.00 – 16.00)
Ministry of Justice
Finally, please write to Jock, even if it’s only a ‘good luck’ postcard. Any
letters and postcards help to keep Jock feeling positive and high spirited and
all are gratefully received. You can write to Jock at the following address:
Sofia Central Prison,
21 General Stoletov Boulevard,
To whom it may concern,
I am writing to you in regards to Australian National Jock Palfreeman.
Mr. Palfreeman is currently imprisoned in Sofia Central Prison in Bulgaria.
After defending two young innocent boys from a viscous attack by a group of
drunken football hooligans, and later being forced to defend himself against the
same assailants, he was sentenced to twenty years incarceration under charges of
murder and attempted murder.
He is clearly only guilty of causing accidental death while using self defence.
Mr. Palfreeman witnessed the gang (of around 16 men) attacking the two boys and
ran to their aid. While trying to keep the gang at bay he suffered a viscous
attack and was left with no choice but to defend himself. His version of events
has remained consistent since the night in question and is supported by numerous
witnesses. All of whom are prepared to testify in his defence.
It has since transpired that at his trial, to my astonishment, key people and
possible witnesses were never interviewed by police, the CCTV footage from the
scene went missing and many of the statements that were submitted to the court
by the prosecution were not the same as the statements made (by the same people)
on the night in question.
Anything working in favour of Mr. Palfreemans’ defence was completely
disregarded by the judge and the prosecutions case was built on the witness
statements made by the football hooligans that initially attacked the two boys,
all claiming that Mr. Palfreeman randomly attacked them and chased them with the
intent of killing somebody.
The trial was a farce so were all appeals
I ask that the Bulgarian Authorities allow him to be transferred to Australia where he can be closer to his family and stop their attempts to try and keep him imprisoned in Bulgaria.
We will continue showing our solidarity and highlighting his case until we are satisfied with the progress.
Mr. Palfreeman selflessly saved the lives of two young boys, risking his own
safety and costing him his own freedom. He should be deemed a hero, not a cold