Jock Palfreeman went to court on July 2.
One witness, who works in the building where the CCTV footage went missing (which is still missing, along with the computer on to which it was recorded — see : Jock Palfreeman : May 2009 Update) gave evidence at the hearing. He was asked if police spoke to him. He said ‘No’, but added that some individuals came to his workplace on the day following the original incident to look at the video. He did not specify whether they were police.
Jock also gave a statement to the court about the day’s events.
Jock’s lawyer made a request that Jock be placed under house arrest (in the apartment of an acquaintance in Sofia), but the judge ruled this option invalid on the basis that Jock — especially as a foreigner — was a flight risk.
As it stands, 19 months after having been arrested, Jock remains unconvicted, unsentenced, and languishes in Sofia prison.
For more details on Jock’s case, and further information on how to assist Jock, please see freejock.net:
Jock Palfreeman, a 22 year old Australian, was visiting friends in Bulgaria when he witnessed the vicious gang beating of another man in December, 2007. Going to the aid of this man, Jock was brutally attacked by the group, and is now facing murder charges in Sofia – Bulgaria’s capital. Although he acted in self-defence, Jock is being treated as a murderer and a hooligan as he endures a lengthy trial and near-torturous prison conditions.
At freejock.net, we maintain that Jock acted in self-defence, and strongly believe he should be returned to his family and friends in Australia. The purpose of this website is to be an accurate information resource for those interested in his case, and to provide a means for his supporters to unite and support this young man through his ordeal. It is not an attack on Bulgaria or its people; we simply want the fair and transparent trial that all people are entitled to.
Friends and supporters of Jock held a public meeting in Sydney on July 19; an article appeared in the local press regarding his case: Friends rally to free Jock, Boel Eriksson, The Mosman Daily, July 15, 2009 / Help us find justice for our mate Jock, Boel Eriksson, The North Shore Times, July 16, 2009. Jock’s case has also come to the attention of the Roma Virtual Network. See also : Foreign Correspondent : One Night in Sofia (Jock Palfreeman) (June 3, 2009).
Please note that the individual on whose behalf Jock intervened is a Romani (‘Gyspy’), and that Bulgaria has an unfortunate history of anti-Roma violence. For further background infos, please see:
The European Roma Information Office (ERIO) is an international advocacy organisation which promotes political and public discussion on Roma issues by providing factual and in-dept[h] information on a range of policy issues to the European Union institutions, Roma civil organisations, governmental authorities and intergovernmental bodies.
The European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC) is an international public interest law organisation engaging in a range of activities aimed at combating anti-Romani racism and human rights abuse of Roma. The approach of the ERRC involves, in particular, strategic litigation, international advocacy, research and policy development, and training of Romani activists.