Pope's advisor Cardinal Pell convicted of sexual abuse

Feb 27, 2019
Melbourne: Vatican treasurer in Rome Cardinal George Pell has been found guilty of sexually assaulting a child under the age of 16 and four other charges of indecent act. The charges relate to December 1996 and early 1997 at St Patrick’s Cathedral, when he became archbishop of Melbourne.

Pell, 77, has been taken in custody following a sentencing hearing on Wednesday. He will be sentenced on March 13. However, he can appeal against the verdict thereafter. Now his lawyer may apply for bail later in the day before the Court of Appeal.

As chief of Vatican finances, Pell held the third-most powerful position in the Church and he has now been removed. He used to be Pope Francis' closest advisor.

The claim of former prime minister John Howard who provided character references for Pell was rejected by the judge, who called Pell's behaviour “shocking conduct”.

Earlier as he arrived in the court, protesters shouted a "maggot" and a "monster."

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