ANKARA: Cardinal George Pell (pix) was released after Australia’s top court acquitted him of child sexual abuse, Anadolu Agency reported, according to local media reports.
Saying the jury had not properly considered all the evidence presented at trial, the High Court of Australia overturned his conviction after two days of intense hearings, TV network ABC reported.
Following the verdict, authorities released Pell, 78, from Barwon Prison and he was driven to a church property in Melbourne.
In a short statement, Pell praised the court decision and said he bore his accuser no ill will.
“I have consistently maintained my innocence while suffering from a serious injustice,“ ABC quoted Pell’s statement was saying
In 2018, Pell was convicted of sexually assaulting two choirboys in 1996-1997 during his time as cardinal at a Melbourne cathedral, and sentenced to six years in prison. — Bernama