Cardinal Pell sentenced to six years imprisonment for sexual abuse
FREE Catholic Classes
Cardinal George Pell was sentenced Wednesday to six years imprisonment, after being convicted in December of sexual abuse of two choirboys in 1996. He will be eligible for parole after serving three years and eight months of his sentence.
Melbourne, Australia, (CNA) - Chief Judge Peter Kidd handed down the sentence March 13 from the Victoria County Court. Kidd's remarks of more than 70 minutes were broadcast live. Several times Kidd characterized Pell's behavior as "brazen", and he called him "extraordinarily arrogant."
Kidd said that "you had a degree of confidence that the victims would not complain," and that "you clearly felt that you did not need" to threaten them to keep them from making a complaint.
The prefect emeritus of the Secretariat for the Economy has maintained his innocence, and will apply to appeal his conviction in June.
Pell, 77, had been incarcerated at the Melbourne Assessment Prison while he awaited the results of the sentencing hearing.
The cardinal was convicted on five counts of sex abuse based on charges he sexually assaulted two choirboys while serving as Archbishop of Melbourne.
It was the cardinal's second trial, as a jury in an earlier trial had failed to reach a unanimous verdict. The first jury were deadlocked 10-2 in Pell's favor, multiple sources close to the case told CNA.
His appeal will be made on three points: the jury's reliance on the evidence of a single victim, an irregularity that kept Pell from entering his not guilty plea in front of the jury, and the defense not being allowed to show a visual representation supporting his claim of innocence.
The appeal document says that "the verdicts are unreasonable and cannot be supported, having regard to the evidence, because on the whole of the evidence, including unchallenged exculpatory evidence from more than 20 Crown witnesses, it was not open to the jury to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt on the word of the complainant alone."
Another Australian prelate, Archbishop Philip Wilson, was convicted in May of failing to report allegations of child sexual abuse disclosed to him in the 1970s. But in December a district judge overturned that conviction, saying there was reasonable doubt a crime had been committed. Before his conviction was overturned, Wilson served about five months of a 12-month home detention sentence.
Pell's conviction has met with varied reactions. While many figures in Australian media have lauded Pell's conviction, some Australians have called it into question, prompting considerable debate across the country.
Greg Craven, vice-chancellor of the Australian Catholic University, suggested that the justice process was tainted by media and police forces that had worked "to blacken the name" of Pell "before he went to trial."
"This is not a story about whether a jury got it right or wrong, or about whether justice is seen to prevail," Craven said in a Feb. 27 opinion piece in The Australian. "It's a story about whether a jury was ever given a fair chance to make a decision, and whether our justice system can be heard above a media mob."
Pell was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Ballarat in 1966. He was consecrated a bishop in 1987, and appointed auxiliary bishop of Melbourne, becoming ordinary of the see in 1996. Pell was then Archbishop of Sydney from 2001 to 2014, when he was made prefect of the newly-created Secretariat for the Economy. He served on Pope Francis' Council of Cardinals from 2013 to 2018. Pell ceased to be prefect of the economy secretariat Feb. 24.
Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for January 2019
Young People and the Example of Mary. That young people, especially in Latin America, follow the example of Mary and respond to the call of the Lord to communicate the joy of the Gospel to the world.
The Diocese of CÃºcuta in Colombia reported this week that it has provided 1 million meals to Venezuelan migrants affected by the ... continue reading
The parliament of the Australian state of Victoria is considering a proposal to end the convention of beginnings daily sessions with the ... continue reading
A proposal to grant amnesty to those convicted of war crimes committed during the El Salvadoran civil war has drawn friece criticizm from ... continue reading
The Catholic Church in Australia is calling for an increase to the minimum wage in the country, saying that it will help lift families out ... continue reading
Mother Emilia Rivero runs the Providence Nursing Home Foundation in Caracas, Venezuela. Even in ordinary times, caring for lonely, poor, ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- 'Living Lent': Thursday of the Second Week of Lent - Day 16
- Daily Reading for Friday, March 22nd, 2019 HD Video
- Prayer Requests Live for Wednesday, March 20th, 2019 HD Video
- St. Enda: Saint of the Day for Thursday, March 21, 2019
- Daily Readings for Thursday, March 21, 2019
- Victoria parliament considers ending daily Our Father
- Colombian diocese has served 1 million meals to Venezuelan migrants
- Prayer Requests Live for Tuesday, March 19th, 2019 HD
- Daily Reading for Thursday, March 21st, 2019 HD
- Prayer Requests Live for Monday, March 18th, 2019 HD
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, March 20th, 2019 HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org
Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel
Learn the Catholic way
Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all
K-12 & Adult Education Classes
Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education
Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.
Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.