Australia Jock Palfreeman parole bid delayed
Australia's Foreign Minister in talks about Jock Palfreeman's release
Australia's Foreign Minister Marise Payne has confirmed she is in talks with her Bulgarian counterpart about the release of Jock Palfreeman. Australia's Foreign Minister Marise Payne has confirmed she is in talks with her Bulgarian counterpart about t The 32-year-old was granted early parole last Friday after serving 11 years of a 20-year sentence for fatally stabbing Bulgarian law student Andrei Monov, 23, during a brawl in the capital, Sofia in 2007.However, Palfreeman had to wait for an emergency passport to be issued and is being kept in an immigration centre.
Australian prisoner Jock Palfreeman's bid for freedom in Bulgaria has been dealt another setback with a decision on whether to overturn his parole delayed.
Three judges sitting on Bulgaria's highest appeals court will rule within two months on a panel's decision to grant parole to the convicted murderer.
Palfreeman has served 11 years of a 20-year sentence since being found guilty of murder and attempted murder in the stabbing of two Bulgarian youths during a Sofia street brawl in 2007.
Bulgarian judges say Jock Palfreeman parole backlash threatens judicial independence
In a new twist to the saga of Sydneysider Jock Palfreeman, 292 Bulgarian judges sign a letter defending the appellate court's decision to grant the Australian parole. This comes after considerable public and political criticism of the judgement and the panel of three judges — criticism backed by the very body set up to ensure judicial independence.The Bulgarian Union of Judges has written to the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) that oversees the judiciary. "…you are destroying fundamental pillars of country governed by the law — the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary," the letter reads.
Many prominent Bulgarian politicians believe the Australian should serve out that 20-year sentence.
Nationalist political parties have also organised demonstrations in the capital Sofia against his release and the chief prosecutor has demanded Palfreeman's parole should be revoked.
The 32-year-old, who was serving in the British army at the time of the incident, has said he acted in self-defence and was trying to protect Roma people being attacked by a group of Bulgarians.
A media throng turned up at the country's highest court yesterday for Palfreeman's hearing, which he didn't appear for.
He boycotted the proceedings, saying it wasn't worth him putting his boots on for it.
Jock Palfreeman supporters in Bulgaria face deregistration as human rights group
A far-right political party's move to ban the Bulgaria Helsinki Committee for offering support to convicted Australian killer Jock Palfreeman is described as an "unprecedented attempt to silence a human rights organisation in Europe".The far-right Bulgarian party VRMO, one of two parties sharing power in government, has written to the prosecutor general demanding that the Bulgaria Helsinki Committee (BHC) be banned.
But his lawyer Kalin Angelov attended and described the appeal of the parole decision as "absurd".
"I think it is frustrating to everyone here," he said.
He said he did not know what the court's decision would be.
"That is the million-dollar question," Angelov said.
Australia says it has issued Palfreeman emergency travel papers and he should be permitted to go home.
Yesterday's hearing, initially scheduled for October 23, was brought forward by the court.
Australian prisoner languishes in limbo in Bulgaria .
Australian prisoner Jock Palfreeman's bid for parole, and freedom, in Bulgaria has ignited a political firestorm, both in the country he is being detained - and in the Sydneysider's home town.The chief prosecutor wants to reverse a decision to grant the 32-year-old parole, halfway through his 20-year sentence for murder. Many believe he should serve out the full sentence.
Australian appeals guilty verdict in murder of law student
(21 Oct 2010) SHOTLIST ++EARLY MORNING SHOTS++ 1. Various of Bulgarian Court of Justice 2. Various of prison van arriving at court 3. Interior of court ...