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The story of Jock Plafreeman

by Anarchist Solidarity

It’s been three and a half years now since Jock Palfreeman has been imprisoned after saving the lives of two young Roma boys in Bulgaria!

In short Jock ran to the aid of the two boys when he was witness to a vicious and racist attack inflicted on them by around sixteen drunken football hooligans. Jock held them at bay for long enough for the two Roma boys to run away but the group turned on him. Jock was set upon and literally had to fight to save his own life. During the fight one of the group, Andrei Monov, was accidentally killed. Jock was sentenced to twenty years imprisonment and the equivelent of a £250,000 fine! (for the full story please go to http://www.freejock.com).

Support for Jock has now reached an international level.

Anarchists and Antifascists have started campaigns aound the globe including Australia, UK, Russia, Poland, France, Austria, Greece, and more… Strangely, Bulgaria is not in that list.

Suprised? So were we!

We went to the website of FAB (Bulgarian Anarchist Federation) to see if there was any mention of Jock. To our astonishment we found that not only had the FAB decided not to support Jock, they had decided to go out of thier way to publically condemn him! They claimed that Andrei Monov was thier friend and that Jock was a killer who deserved the maximum prison sentence!

(see the google translation below)

”Federation of Anarchists in Bulgaria condemns any kind of street violence and joined grieving relatives and friends of the slain boy.
Prompt the authorities to fulfill their obligations to conduct a full investigation of the case and the guilty receive fair and appropriate punishment to his grave crime.
Andrei was also a friend and we share the grief of relatives and friends.
Rest in peace, Andrei!”

http://anarchy.bg/novini/novini-ot-bulgaria/496-1-godina-ot-ubijstvoto-na-andrej-monov.html

Not only did this make us rage to the core, it also made us question the FABs idea of Anarchy. Why on earth would people who call themselves Anarchists be in favour of a prison sentence for a man who had taken Antifascist action? And why did they so openly associate themselves with Monov when he had clearly been involved in a savage and outnumbered racist attack on two young Roma boys?

We got in touch with AF (Anarchist Federation UK), FABs sister organisation. We wanted to know if they knew what was going on in regards to the statement on FABs website and also where they stood in regards to supporting Jock.

They emailed us back to say that they would investigate. Infact that was all they said.

Months passed along with more emails from us and all they would say was that they were investigating. Eventually they just stopped replying and we realised that we were wasting our time.

However, a spokesperson for AF did contact a mutual friend and comrade who has also been campaigning for Jock. Firstly they wanted confirmation that AS were a trustworthy and genuine Anarchist group. They were given the confirmation they asked for, but then decided that the word of our comrade was not good enough (an insult to say the least) and rejected the verification.

AF then wrote again to our comrade stating that Jock was a soldier that had been involved in a drunken fight and had killed a friend of the FAB. They claimed that Monov was ”not a Nazi”. They also stated that the only people who claim that Monov was a nazi are the fascists themselves!…

So let us get this straight, (we’ll get to the soldier bit in a minute), Monov, who was out with at least fifteen other (known locally to be fascist) football fans, drunk, and invoved in such a savage racist attack on the two Roma boys, does not qualify as fascist in the opinion of AF or FAB?

The grieving friends of Monov who were at the funeral (alongside members of the Bulgarian government, cheif of police, judges and other ‘important and influental’ people) who are reffered to by the AF and FAB as Bulgarian fascists and the far right are falsely claiming that Monov was their friend?

We don’t get it!!

It beggs the question: What would FAB and AF have to say if it were one of the Roma boys who had been killed that night? Because as far as we can see that is exactly what would have happened if Jock had not run to thier aid.

Would FAB still claim that thier beloved Andrei Monov was thier friend if he had been involved in a savage racist attack resulting in the death of the victim?

We’d like to know! So if any FAB or AF would like to answer our questions feel free. (you’ve got our email address)

Now, the controversial claims about Jock ‘being a soldier’…

Firstly, lets get one thing clear, Jock has never claimed to be an Anarchist, Activist or Antifascist. He was a young lad travelling and making friends.

He decided to join the British Army towards the end of 2007, his visa was coming to an end and he saw it as an opportunity to stay in the UK. He completed four weeks training and then went on leave for christmas. He was on holiday in Bulgaria.

So did we know Jock is a soldier?

Well he’s not! He never completed his training.

Did we know that Jock had joined the British Army in 2007?

Yes we did! And quite frankly we don’t care!! The decisions Jock made before the incident in question do not interest us one bit. As far as we are concerned those decisions are completeley irrelevant to what happened on the night of the 28th December 2007. Jock unfortunately found himself in the wrong place, at the wrong time, and he did the right thing!!

Thats enough for us.

It is abundantly clear that the whole case has been completely manipulated by Monovs father and his high ranking friends, all of the court proceedings to date have been a complete farce, there has been absolutely no sense whatsoever of a fair trial and it is so blindingly obvious that Jock has been completely stitched up!

Jock Palfreeman is an incredibly brave and courageous man who took outstanding Antifascist action and he needs our support.

Which side are you on?

For more info about Jocks case and how you can support him please go to: http://www.abc.net.au/austory/specials/conviction/default.htm http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8rLrOW1g1k www.freejock.com www.anarchistsolidarity.wordpress.com

Also you can join the facebook page Freedom For Jock.

STATEMENT ALSO ENDORSED BY BRIGHTON ANARCHIST BLACK CROSS

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THIS IS A  CALL OUT!!

SHOW YOUR SOLIDARITY FOR JOCK PALFREEMAN

AN INTERNATIONAL WEEK OF ACTION HAS BEEN CALLED

FOR 11th-17th of  April 2011

Continuing the campaign for Jock;

Jock Palfreeman is a 23 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
links:
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: https://anarchistsolidarity.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/jocks-sentence-upheld-after-an-appeal ) He has one last chance of appealing against that decision.
It is now more important than ever that we collectively put as much pressure on
the Bulgarian authorities as possible to accept Jocks final appeal.
From the 11th to the 17th  of April there will be another International week of
action for Jock. 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!

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,
http://www.buldir.com/bulgarian_embassies_abroad.html).
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.
(please see below for a list of addresses).

If you want us to help promote your events send us the details at
anarchosolidarity@yahoo.co.uk
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:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Bulgaria
Address: 2 Aleksander Zhendov Str
Sofia 1040
BULGARIA
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
E-mail: information@bulgarianembassy.org.uk

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
E-mail: iprd@mfa.government.bg

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
E-mail: pr@justice.government.bg

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:
Jock Palfreeman,
Sofia Central Prison,
21 General Stoletov Boulevard,
Sofia 1309,
BULGARIA

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!

I ask that the Bulgarian Authorities grant him his appeal and release him from those absurd charges!

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
blooded killer!

Signed

Anarchist Solidarity

Posted: October 27, 2010 in Anarchist Solidarity

Anarchist Solidarity