Cardinal Pell Appeals Prison Sentence

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by David Nussman  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  June 6, 2019   

Cardinal George Pell's attorneys appeal six-year prison sentence on charges of sexual abuse

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Australian Cardinal George Pell is appealing his December 2018 conviction of sexual abuse of two choir boys.

Since his sentencing this past March, Pell has been serving time behind bars.

His attorneys presented their case to the court to overturn the conviction Wednesday morning.

Cardinal George Pell, formerly a high-ranking figure in the Vatican, has always maintained his innocence. 

Cardinal Pell's attorneys are basing their appeal on three grounds.

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First, they argue that the jury's verdict was "unreasonable." They say that one man's testimony — with no other evidence — is not enough to convict someone beyond a reasonable doubt.

Second, the judge refused to allow a video to be shown to jurors which challenged crucial details in the accuser's testimony.

And third, an irregularity in the trial: that Pell did not deliver his plea of guilty or not guilty in front of the jury — a critical point in Australian law.

Pell is Australia's most senior cleric to be convicted and sentenced to prison on charges of sexual abuse, and his case drew worldwide media coverage.

The court could make its decision within a week, or it could take several months to deliver its verdict.

Some legal experts believe Cardinal Pell has a solid case and a good chance at winning the appeal.

 

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