Bulgaria’s Supreme Court of Cassation has left without consideration a request from the Prosecutor-General to review the Supreme Administrative Court ruling allowing parole for Jock Palfreeman.
Palfreeman was granted parole in September 2019. He had been serving a 20-year sentence after being convicted of the December 2007 murder of student Andrei Monov.
The May 28 2020 ruling by the Supreme Court of Cassation terminates proceedings regarding the application by the Prosecutor-General, at the time Sotir Tsatsarov, and is not subject to appeal.
The court found that the question of parole was not subject to its review and the law did not make provision for the resumption of proceedings through an act of the appellate court.
“The request for reopening of the case is inadmissible and should be dismissed and the proceedings terminated,” the judges ruled.
This is the latest development in the saga that followed parole for Palfreeman, who instead of being released directly from Sofia Central Prison was transferred from there to the Busmantsi detention centre for foreigners illegally in the country.
In October, he was released from Busmantsi, but bans on him leaving the country were not lifted.
In January 2020, Sofia Administrative Court overturned the Bulgarian Migration Directorate’s 2011 ban on Palfreeman leaving Bulgaria.
The Supreme Court of Cassation held its hearing on the Prosecutor-General’s application in October, saying at the time that it would hand down a ruling within two months. More than seven months passed before the May 28 ruling.
(Photo of Palfreeman, posted on his Facebook page, with his Australian passport in October before it was taken away by police)