Palfreeman's Father: It Is Common for People to Carry Knives in BulgariaCrime | November 12, 2010, Friday // 15:16| views
Simon Palfreeman (R). Photo by BGNES
The father of a 23-year-old Australian man, sentenced to 20 years in jail for murder in Bulgaria, has defended his son by saying it is not illegal and not uncommon for people to carry knives in Bulgaria.
"It's not illegal for people to carry knives in Bulgaria and it's not uncommon for people to carry knives in Bulgaria," Palfreeman's father Simon Palfreeman told ABC Europe correspondent Emma Alberici.
According to Simon Palfreeman the eyewitness evidence shows that it was only after Jock had been attacked himself by the 12 men that the knife came out.
"And then it was quite clear that he was using it simply to try and warn them away," he said.
"It was either going to be the Roma boy if Jock hadn't intervened or at one stage Jock was on the ground with large concrete pavers being thrown at him."
Simon Palfreeman concedes that the chance of an appeal going from a 20 year life sentence down to an acquittal is probably unlikely, but hopes for an acknowledgment that "what Jock did was a good Samaritan act".
Jock Palfreeman, 23, has been kept behind bars in a Bulgarian jail after being charged with murder after an alleged street brawl in the capital Sofia at the end of 2007.
According to Bulgarian prosecutors, who asked for life imprisonment for the defendant, Palfreeman was not provoked and did not act in self-defense, as he has claimed.
Palfreeman was also found guilty of attempted murder over the alleged stabbing of a 19-year-old man during the fight.
The Sydneysider has repeatedly denied both charges, saying he was trying to defend himself from being attacked by a group of men, and is now appealing the sentence.
According to Jock's family, friends and supporters his verdict is a "hideous perversion of justice".
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