PELL

#22
As I understand, the appeal hinges on the deinal by the trial judge of the submission of "evidence" the defence cousel had commissioned - which was an animated depiction of the movements of Pell, his clergy at the time - such that it could be shown that it was impossible for at least one of the acts to be performed without being in front of his flock. It was, AIUI, dismissed on the grounds of something along the lines it would lead the jury rather than present objective evidence - I am not entirely sure though...

Pells lawyer Robert Richter trivialised the issue by calling His crimes as "no more than a plain vanilla sexual penetration case". No 13 year old kid that has been sexually abused deserves that sort of demeaning statement. He has since apologised but he said it none the less. I think it displays some of HIS (Richters) character. I think that you would have to be privy to the details of the case to be able to make judgement. Those that were did and he was found guilty. Many older devout catholics prefer to believe what they think and not the evidence presented. The problem now is that how will they find a jury capable of making an unbiased decision.
Let him take it unwillingly up the Khyber pass and then state it is a simple case of penetration - he is not sorry - he was demeaning the importance of the case in the hope of finally achieveing a favourable outcome for his client.

Watching the sentencing video here: https://www.theage.com.au/national/...eal-still-hangs-over-him-20190313-p513uj.html, one has to question - for penetration of a 13 year old boy - 4 years! WTF... Looks like the judiciary agree with Richter's assesment.

There was a dodgy bloke in my local soccer club - wasn't even a coach - used to drive from Frankston all the way to Fawkner to be, effectively a ball boy and match day chauffer.. I think to get his hands on the boys' balls. It's not just the religious sectors that have their issues...
 

red750

Well-Known Member
#23
Having watched the entire sentencing on TV, the penetration was oral, not anal, according to the judge. Cardinal Pell (he is still that until the Pope sacks him) held the boys head in his crotch, before handling the boys genitals.
 
#24
13 year old boy forcibly having someone’s penis in his mouth - 4 years is still too light - especially for someone abusing a position of trust and power. Would be interesting to get the lawyers take on them having to forcibly give someone a BJ
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#26
As I understand, the appeal hinges on the deinal by the trial judge of the submission of "evidence" the defence counsel had commissioned - which was an animated depiction of the movements of Pell, his clergy at the time - such that it could be shown that it was impossible for at least one of the acts to be performed without being in front of his flock. It was, AIUI, dismissed on the grounds of something along the lines it would lead the jury rather than present objective evidence - I am not entirely sure though....
First let me confirm that I am NOT a supporter of Pell. My dislike of him began many years ago before this whole paedophilia stuff came to light.

However, having read a precis of the daily evidence, I had concerns about many things.
  1. Being selected to be part of the Cathedral's choir is something worked hard for, and selection is a great honour.
  2. Discipline in the choir is very strict. The Masters will brook no fooling around. The Seniors would keep not hesitate to crash down on bad behaviour of the younger boys.
  3. The idea of altar boys, or choirboys sneaking a drink of altar wine is one of those ancient urban myths.
  4. No doubt the parents of the boys would have been waiting for them after the Service to take them home. How could they think they could carry out their escapade without getting questioned by their parents for keeping them waiting
  5. The sacristy is out of bounds to choirboys (See point 2)
  6. Two choirboys in their robes going into the sacristy area of the cathedral would stand out like dog's balls.
  7. A Cardinal is a Prince of the Church. Princes don't go wandering about the place without a retinue of assistants.
  8. If a Cardinal found choirboys in a prohibited area, like any adult, the first response would be to bawl them out, not ball them.
  9. The Cardinal didn't know the boys - no prior grooming.
  10. If the Cardinal was going into the sacristy to disrobe, he would have been wearing several layers of clothing: (Picture on right) Plus his trousers, Y-fronts and shirt. 1552477303268.png The Alb is a full-length smock-like garment that would have to be hitched up to even take a pee.
  11. A priest of any rank just doesn't rip his vestments off when disrobing. There are prayers to be said, and care taken of the garments. That's why the Cardinal would have had assistants to help him disrobe.
This is the most incredible part of the story: The Cardinal comes into the sacristy without his retinue. He catches two choirboys in a prohibited area - a crime against cathedral discipline. Instead of doing what any other person catching miscreants in the act, the Cardinal, without thought of discovery, hitches up his vestments, flops out his old fella and demands a knob job. All in six minutes.

I reckon Pell could swing for a lot of other crimes, but I could not, in all honesty and reasonableness, give him the thumbs down on this one.
 
#27
OME - As I am not one who even understands the rituals of religion (despite having gone to an Anglican school for a few years), so I will take your post on face value and not challenge it, as, to be frank, I am in no position to do so (and I don't have the time to do the research as I have to do some study of Aussie law as it turns out).

My beef is not about the evidential aspects of the case - I was stating that the basis of appeal is the (I presume) Supreme court judge denying a pacman like video depicting movements that assert much what you do on the basis it will lead the jury to a conclusion. However, I will say this: On the assumption the video was only made based on evidence that Pell's defence team could table in court anyway (otherwise, be default it would be inadmissable), then (presumably) 12 jurors good and true listened to the evidence provided and based on that evidence came to the conclusion that the facts that were presented were true and that applying the law (as would be explained to the jury by the judge), that the facts did amount to a guilty verdict. Of course, it is possible the jury was tainted - but when people say the law is an ass with what the press report as perverse decisions by the judge - it is often the jury who has reviewed the evidence and come to the conclusion - ordinary lay people who have heard the evidence (of course, it is the judge that does sentencing). The sanctity of the jury decision is generally not questioned by the judge; the judge can direct a jury to find the defendant not guilty but cannot direct a jury to find the defendant guilty. If the decision is perverse, then the judge can review the sanctity of the decision (Grobbelaar v News Group Newspapers Ltd - 5RB). I believe a similar rule applies in Vic. My point is, it is 12 people good and true that believed the prosecuton version of events and not the defence version. However... I know that is an ignorant view of humanity in general.

My beef is what seems to be a lenient sentence for whatever penetration (could be the boy's ear for all I care) of a 13 year old boy seems lenient and does not warrant the severity of the Crime. I am not against an appeal - it is important to establish, based on fact, whether or not any defendant is guilty. But at this moment in time he is guilty and sentencing should be solely based on that. His appeal will take care of the question of evidence.

Red - I take the point you watched the whole sentencing and it would be interesting to get your take on it; Marty - it would be good to get view also on why you think it is fair.

To borrow a Brexit phrase, I have a red line - molesting children (and women and elderly)... Do that and one should never be able to get anywhere near them again.
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#28
Two points.
  1. It is highly unlikely that the video produced was similar to a 8-bit Pacman production. Here is a video dealing with a motor vehicle collision. It is only short because I did not want to include the mapping and calculations the final video was created from. However, it shows the current state of computer generated imagery for presentation of evidence to juries. In the past this information would have been presented as witness sworn evidence and a series of scaled plans on sheets of paper. For a modern jury, used to getting most of its information visually, the video is the best way to present that evidence.
  2. I agree with you that the individual sentences seem trivial, but we are not privy to the Judges' Rules on sentencing. At least the Judge made the sentences cumulative, not concurrent.
 

robinsm

Rag and tube flyer
#29
Yes he was at fault, but I reckon the worse culprit is our insane puritan culture.
Just imagine a hypothetical society where the kind of stuff he did was praiseworthy and the kids were not considered as victims but as normal.
This type of society possibly existed in ancient Greece and in the Royal Navy of 100 years ago. We have become more puritan in recent years and I don't know why

When I was a kid in Alice Springs, there were a few characters around town ( one an Anglican official ) who were inclined towards boys. As far as I know, nothing much ever happened.
If it did, why should the boy feel guilt and shame so much that he would commit suicide? That would be our culture doing that to them. Of cours the perp played his part, but it was only a part.
so the long term psychological damage to the victims is irrelevant? I think your thinking needs an enema.
 

octave

Well-Known Member
#30
  1. Being selected to be part of the Cathedral's choir is something worked hard for, and selection is a great honour.
  2. Discipline in the choir is very strict. The Masters will brook no fooling around. The Seniors would keep not hesitate to crash down on bad behaviour of the younger boys.
It is not uncommon for people in privileged positions to jeopardize everything for ridiculous reasons. Politicians on enormous income risk it all by making a dodgy claim for travel allowances for a few hundred dollars. Sports stars who assault someone whilst on a big night out or allow themselves to be filmed taking drugs etc. Kids who go to exclusive private schools getting themselves expelled. It is not uncommon for a 13-year-old to make decisions that have not been thoroughly thought through.

The sacristy is out of bounds to choirboys (See point 2)
I imagine it would be out of bounds. I believe that part of the prosecution case was the complainant's ability to describe the layout of sacristy suggesting that at some time the complainant had been in the sacristy.

Two choirboys in their robes going into the sacristy area of the cathedral would stand out like dog's balls.
I have been in that church to do some photography. lots of pillars and other obstructions. I am not sure how many members are in the choir but it would not seem impossible to not notice a couple of boys missing. This is why school teachers do a head count when returning from an excursion.

A Cardinal is a Prince of the Church. Princes don't go wandering about the place without a retinue of assistants.
I have no knowledge of whether a "prince" of the church is ever alone or not or what the procedure is or whether they always follow procedure. I would assume that this was addressed in the evidence but I do not know.

If a Cardinal found choirboys in a prohibited area, like any adult, the first response would be to bawl them out, not ball them.
Pretty much all crime involves someone doing something that is not "normal behaviour"

The Cardinal didn't know the boys - no prior grooming.
Whilst grooming is a well-known tactic, this does not rule out opportunistic abuse. Kids have been assaulted at the playground and recently in Sydney, I think by a stranger in the toilets at a dance school

The Alb is a full-length smock-like garment that would have to be hitched up to even take a pee.
If it can be hitched up to take a pee then perhaps it can be hitched up for other purposes. I honestly have no sound knowledge of the garments in question however I do note that the garments were presented to the jury who were allowed to examine and handle them. I can only presume that they did not buy the idea that the awkwardness of these garments would preclude the scenario presented by the prosecution.

A priest of any rank just doesn't rip his vestments off when disrobing. There are prayers to be said, and care taken of the garments. That's why the Cardinal would have had assistants to help him disrobe.
Does a priest disrobe immediately after the service? The fact is I don't know.

This is the most incredible part of the story: The Cardinal comes into the sacristy without his retinue. He catches two choirboys in a prohibited area - a crime against cathedral discipline. Instead of doing what any other person catching miscreants in the act, the Cardinal, without thought of discovery, hitches up his vestments, flops out his old fella and demands a knob job. All in six minutes.
This scenario does not seem to be impossible. As far as what "any person would do catching miscreants" does not really provide much of a defence. The ordinary person would not kill someone, rob a bank beat their husband/wife but this does not mean that people do not behave in these ways.
The defence of "this behaviour is not normal therefore probably did not happen" could equally apply the Gerald Riddsdale.

"Gerald Ridsdale's victims were sexually abused inside the church, in the presbytery (the parish house), in the priest's car, in victims' homes, at the home of Ridsdale's parents in the city of Ballarat, during outings, and on holidays with the priest. He molested one boy and his sister a few hours after their father's funeral.

Some of the offences occurred during the sacrament of Confession — while Ridsdale would be asking questions about a child's "sins". After Confession (and after the molestation), Ridsdale would perform the rite of Absolution — an official declaration that the child was forgiven for the child's "sins".

Many offences occurred before and after the celebration of Mass, First Holy Communions, Confirmation ceremonies, weddings and funerals. Many of the victims were altar boys.

One altar boy was even sexually abused at the altar when the church was empty and locked after Mass."

If we are to consider things that are unlikely we should then consider the story of the accuser. The fact that the allegations were made so long after the event is often sighted as evidence of a false allegation. It does not seem usual to me that back in the 90s we weren't as aware of organised abuse. It is only in recent years that these things have been acknowledged. A 13-year-old who had done something wrong and perhaps feels some guilt may be reluctant to accuse someone who holds such a high and revered position. Pell, an obviously intelligent and somewhat articulate man did not allow himself to submit to cross-examination if it were me I would not forgo that right.

For what purpose did this man make these allegations? At this point, I have heard no mention of money as far as I know there is no civil case at least at this point. I would imagine that the easiest route to a payout would be to deal directly with the church, get a payout sign the non-disclosure agreement as many have done. What he actually did was open himself to vigorous cross-examination. He does not seem to have done it for notoriety since to protect himself and his family he has remained anonymous. In order to concoct this story, the complainant would need to come up with a particular occasion and make sure the other boy was present on that day and would need to know the approximate layout of the sacristy (which had been out of bounds).

We do know that although child abuse can occur in all areas of society the one thing we are sure about is that within the Catholic (and other churches) there is a history not just of abuse but more troublingly organised institutionalised abuse and the protection of abusers. Also the moving of abusing priests to other parishes.


Is Pell guilty? We can never know for sure unless he confesses. Obviously, the police believed that there was a strong case as did the Office of Public Prosecutions. The first case was a mistrial because the jury was not unanimous. We do not know what the split was. In the second trial, the jury accepted the evidence, some of which is not available to the public, found him guilty. This verdict is unanimous. Of course, from time to time courts do get it wrong but it is the best we can do
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#31
All I can say is that the evidence of the complainant must have been overwhelming to rebut evidence in reply that can be demonstrated repeatedly with constant result. This is the evidence of times locations and distances. Did the first jury have reasonable doubts about the prosecution version? They must have to have been split.

It doesn't matter if the complainant had hidden reasons for making a complaint. It is the particular allegation that the Court has to deal with. No bringing in Ridsdale and his ilk. Leave your biases outside the Jury Room. Are the alleged facts feasible? If not, then the verdict must be "Not Guilty" of the offence alleged. Even the greatest bastard unhung can be innocent sometimes.
 

octave

Well-Known Member
#32
[
All I can say is that the evidence of the complainant must have been overwhelming to rebut evidence in reply that can be demonstrated repeatedly with constant result. This is the evidence of times locations and distances.
What is the evidence of "time and distance"? What you posted did not contain times or distances in any meaningful way.

I did not bring Ridsdale in it to suggest that because he is guilty therefore Pell must be, but purely because those who defend Pell suggest that it could not have possibly happened in this kind of church setting. Ridsdale provides a precedent that this can and at least in Ridsdale's case did happen in a church in confession in a car in his house. As a defence, it is relevant but weak.

The fact is that he was found guilty by a jury. This could be overturned or not. You and I have not seen the evidence but the jury has as well as the police and public prosecutor. It is quite a high bar to reach to get 12 people to agree. I believe one of the grounds for appeal is the disallowance of the animation. I would imagine that the admissibility of this will be assessed at the appeal. If it is deemed to be admissible I guess there will be a retrial if not I guess it will probably be made available to the public.
 

Marty_d

Well-Known Member
#33
@Jerry_Atrick - It seemed to me that the judge had spent a considerable time thinking about all aspects of the case. Why only 6 years? The following factors reduced the time:
- age of the accused
- health
- no priors
- character references
- otherwise (outwardly) blameless life
There's probably a heap of others. Of course many remarks were on the negative side of the ledger too.
As the judge said, there's a very real possibility that he'll die in prison even with this sentence.
 

spacesailor

Well-Known Member
#34
IF,
The appeal is successful.
THEN a trial for "Manslaughter" over the death of One of his victims (suicide) should be the next step to get him out of society .
spacesailor
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#35
What is the evidence of "time and distance"? What you posted did not contain times or distances in any meaningful way.
No, I don't have the exact figures. What I was saying was that it is possible to construct a timeline based on known start and end times to calculate how long it would take to go from the places both the accused and accuser were last known to be until a point in time known to be after the occurrence of teh alleged incident.

Have a read of this day-by-day precis of the trial evidence Day-by-day: How Pell case unfolded This is from a secular news source.
This one is from a Catholic news source: The case against Pell: new details emerge
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#36
The long-term psychological damage was done not only by Pell, but also by our puritan society.
There was this boy in Salt Lake city who was a straight "A" student, the leader of the church group and a top athelete.
He suicided.... Why? because he couldn't stop wanking.
So who was to blame? I say all who supported the evil puritan culture which made this poor boy think he was sinning in an unforgiveable way.
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#37
Yep those Mormons have this in common with the Islamic state fighters.. they have they puritan brain poison deeply in their delusions.
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#38
Bruce, to be honest, I don't know what the Book of Mormon has to say about wanking. I only got a few pages into it and couldn't stop laughing, so had to put it down. Still have a copy somewhere. It's like a cross between science fiction and comedy.
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#39
Yep I've never read it either. But it is tainted by puritanism I would bet. Most of those so tainted have no idea and think of their ideas as being wholesome, when in fact they are the opposite.
There is a Mormon church not far from here, and if I am ever in danger of thinking there is some hope for the human race, I only have to drive past it to be corrected. It is the most opulent building in the area.
 
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