George Pell’s case has been closely followed by large numbers of survivors of child sexual abuse in Australia and overseas. The final appeal judgment will be handed down on Wednesday, August 21.
Some survivors may find themselves more anxious than usual as they await the outcome of Pell’s appeal, and find the outcome distressing regardless of the result.
We would encourage people to have support on hand for the appeal date if they think they need it, and to try and limit their exposure to media articles in the lead up. And if you require immediate support, please contact 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732).
This article provides helpful tips for ‘Taking care of yourself (or a loved one) when sexual abuse makes the headlines‘.
- If the jury’s verdict is judged to be unreasonable, Pell’s conviction will be overturned
- If the judges find the court erred, a retrial could be ordered
- The appeal outcome could itself be subject to a High Court appeal
The Victorian Court of Appeal will rule on whether to overturn Pell’s convictions for sexually abusing two choirboys when he was archbishop of Melbourne in the 1990s.
A jury found Pell guilty last December of sexual penetration of a child under 16 and four counts of committing an indecent act with a child, making him the highest ranked Catholic cleric ever convicted of child sex abuse.
Three judges have scrutinised the case and will take their seats behind the bench to announce their decision from 9:30am on Wednesday.
The proceedings will be live streamed on the Supreme Court of Victoria’s website.