AUSTRALIA’S TOP CATHOLIC OFFICIAL HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH MULTIPLE SEX OFFENSES

Cardinal George Pell, Australia’s top Catholic official, has been charged with multiple sexual offenses following historical claims against him.

Fast facts:

  1. The Cardinal is currently serving as one of Pope Francis’s top advisers at the Vatican. He is the Church’s top financial adviser, its CFO. (link)
  2. In 2013, he was one of eight Cardinals tasked with finding ways to reform the Catholic Church. (link)
  3. He has expressed wide indifference to the plight of abuse victims. (link)
  4. Australia and the Vatican lack an extradition treaty. (link)

In the past, Cardinal Pell had repeatedly denied covering up abuses by Catholic Priests though he blamed his deceased predecessor for allegedly burning incriminating documents.

While testifying in an abuse inquiry, the Cardinal was asked how he felt after learning that a priest in his parish had molested a child. In response, the Cardinal said, “[It] was a “sad story” but [it] was “not of much interest” to him.

“I want to be perfectly clear — the process and the procedures that have been followed in the charging of Cardinal Pell have been the same that have been applied in a whole range of historical sex offenses whenever we investigate them,” Victoria Deputy Police Commissioner Shane Patton said at a press conference.

The Cardinal is currently serving as one of Pope Francis’s top advisers at the Vatican. He is the Church’s top financial adviser, its CFO. In 2013, he was one of eight Cardinals tasked with finding ways to reform the Catholic Church.

The Cardinal is required to appear in a Melbourne court on July 18, 2017. Australia and the Vatican lack an extradition treaty.

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