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‘You’re a monster’: Cardinal George Pell found guilty of child sex abuse

Photo Credit: REUTERS/Mark Dadswell

‘You’re a monster’: Cardinal George Pell found guilty of child sex abuse

‘You’re a monster’: Cardinal George Pell found guilty of child sex abuse

One of the most powerful men in the Roman Catholic Church – Vatican treasurer Cardinal George Pell – has been found guilty of child sex abuse and is facing a significant term of imprisonment.

Australian Cardinal George Pell, 77, is almost certain to face prison after a jury found him guilty of sexually assaulting two 13-year-old boys in 1996 and 1997. One of the victims has since died. The other, a man now in his 30s cannot be named.

The cardinal was Archbishop of Melbourne when he abused the two 13-year-old boys and was managing the church’s response to widespread child abuse by priests through the “Melbourne Response”, which he designed.

Australian media has been unable to report the guilty verdict until now. A court order banning media reporting of Pell’s five-week long trial, which began in November 2018, was lifted by Chief Judge Peter Kidd on Tuesday. The charges Pell has been found guilty of, include one charge of sexual penetration of a child and four charges of an indecent act with or in the presence of a child in the late 1990s.

The Guardian reporter Melissa Davey was outside the Melbourn court today and witnessed the public’s anger directed at Pell.

Some yelled: “You’re a pig, you’re a scum bag, you’re a monster.”

In a statement on Tuesday, Pell’s accuser said he had struggled with “shame, loneliness (and) depression” after the abuse. “Like many survivors it has taken me years to understand the impact upon my life. At some point we realise that we trusted someone we should have feared and we fear those genuine relationships that we should trust.”

Pell’s sentencing is tomorrow. He will face a custodial sentence.

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