Cardinal George Pell, Vatican Treasurer, Will Stand Trial For Sexual Abuse

01 May, 2018, 12:45 | Author: Mable Gonzales
  • Cardinal George Pell: Vatican treasurer faces historical sexual offences trial

Cardinal George Pell, a former top adviser to Pope Francis, has been ordered by a court in Australia to stand trial for several historical sexual abuse charges.

Until now, Pell has not had to formally enter a plea, although he instructed his lawyer from the outset to make clear he meant to plead not guilty.

Some charges were earlier withdrawn by prosecutors.

The Herald Sun said the magistrate found that the complainant behind at least one of the charges was an unsatisfactory witness.

Mr Richter also claimed photos of Dr Pell accompanying Father Gerald Ridsdale to court in 1993, to support him during a sex abuse case hearing, created feelings of "hatred" towards the Cardinal who was then punished by his accusers. They involved alleged offending at a Ballarat cinema during a screening of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and allegations of other offending throughout Ballarat over the following year.

"It is hard to see how a jury can convict on the evidence of a man who cannot recall what he said one minute ago", Wallington said, even when considering the trauma of giving evidence.

Wallington said the complainant represented one of the rare instances when a witness' "cavalier attitude" to giving evidence meant "no jury can put weight upon it". A further related charge was withdrawn.

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Pell's case has coincided with an Australian national inquiry into child sexual abuse, ordered in 2012 after a decade of pressure to investigate widespread allegations of institutional paedophilia.

The charges committed for trial will be dealt with by Victoria's County Court.

Pell's lawyers told the court in February 2018 that the first complaint reached the police in 2015, 40 years after the alleged assault.

He entered the courtroom flanked by his legal team and guarded by a more than two dozen police officers.

She didn't specify which prices will likely be proceed to court docket or any additional element on the date of the trial. A directions hearing will be held on Wednesday to go over a number of administrative matters.

"He will defend the remaining charges".

A statement released on behalf of Pell through law firm Galbally and O'Bryan on Tuesday afternoon said Pell would like to thank his supporters for their "continuing support and prayers".

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