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Sydney man jailed for murder in Bulgaria -

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Sydneysider Jock Palfreeman, 23, has been found guilty of murder in Bulgaria and faces 20 years in
jail, but his parents says key evidence was ignored and an appeal will be launched.


LEIGH SALES, PRESENTER: In Bulgaria, the family of a 23-year-old man found guilty of murder plans
to appeal against the verdict.

Jock Palfreeman was sentenced to 20 years' jail for killing a man with a knife during a fight. In
an interview recorded just hours ago his father told Lateline he was stunned by the conviction. His
parents maintain that crucial evidence was ignored in the judicial process,

Europe correspondent Philip Williams reports from the Bulgarian capital Sofia.

PHILIP WILLIAMS, EUROPE CORRESPONDENT: This was the moment the family feared as Jock Palfreeman was
led into the courtroom. With his father Simon at his side, the 23-year-old Sydney man stood calmly
as the Bulgarian judge handed down the sentence.

As he was bundled away to prison his family were left shocked and angry with what they say is a
seriously flawed process of investigation and prosecution.

DR SIMON PALFREEMAN, FATHER: When it sank in, I think the initial reaction was I was just stunned.
I was not prepared for that. I think the next thing was absolute outrage that they could just so
completely dismiss all the evidence that we had presented. And of course, it was made worse by the
fact that there was no reasoning behind it.

PHILIP WILLIAMS: It all went horribly wrong in Sofia two years ago. Jock Palfreeman says he only
used the knife as self-defence when a mob of drunken youths attacked him after he tried to stop
them beating two gypsies.

JOCK PALFREEMAN, DEFENDANT: I didn't want to hurt anybody, and these guys just still wanted to hurt
somebody for no reason. They still wanted to basically kill someone for nothing.

PHILIP WILLIAMS: But the court believed the Bulgarians in that group who claimed there were no
gypsies and Jock Palfreeman attacked them without provocation, killing one man, Andrei Monov, and
injuring another.

Simon Palfreeman says his son should be treated as a hero for trying to help rather than facing 20
years in jail.

DR SIMON PALFREEMAN: What is sustaining me at the moment is the fact that I have a young son
unfairly in jail with a 20-year sentence in a Bulgarian prison and unjustly. And I have got to
fight for that. So in fact that anger is going to channel, I think, more into: how do we get him
out of the situation?

PHILIP WILLIAMS: The first step is to lodge an appeal. That will happen in the next few days. Even
then it will be a year at least before there's even a chance at changing a situation all find

Two families - one who lost a son; another facing two decades in a Bulgarian jail - paying a
terrible price for a few mad moments two years ago.