Cardinal George Pell, top Pope adviser, arrives in Australia to face sex charges

Source: CNN

Updated 1422 GMT (2222 HKT) July 10, 2017

(CNN)Cardinal George Pell, Australia’s highest-ranking Catholic and a key adviser to Pope Francis, has touched down in his native Australia to face charges of historic sexual abuse at a court hearing on July 26.


Returning to Sydney two weeks after the charges were leveled against him, the Holy See’s third-ranking figure has taken a leave of absence from the Vatican to defend himself at Melbourne Magistrates Court at the end of the month.
Australia’s Victoria police have yet to release a list of charges against the 76-year-old cardinal and have not disclosed any information about alleged victims. Authorities only said there were multiple charges and “multiple complainants.”
Upon his arrival on Monday, the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney noted Pell’s return “should not be a surprise” as Pell had said last month when he was informed of the alleged offenses in Rome that he would return to his homeland to “vigorously defend himself and clear his name.”

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