BREAKING | George Pell loses appeal for child abuse conviction

UPDATE @ 9.30 AM | GEORGE Pell has lost his appeal against his convictions for child sexual abuse.

The Victoria Court of Appeal decision means the disgraced Cardinal will remain behind bars, where he will serve the remainder of his six-year sentence.

There were cheers outside court as the three appeal judges handed down their verdict in Melbourne on Wednesday.


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The appeal was dismissed by a majority of two-to-one.

Pell was convicted in March this year of sexually abusing two 13-year-old choirboys in 1996.

He will be eligible for parole after serving three years and eight months in prison.

In a statement through the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney, Pell’s legal team confirmed they’re considering an appeal to the High Court.

“Cardinal Pell is obviously disappointed with the decision today,” the statement says.

“However his legal team will thoroughly examine the judgement in order to determine a special leave application to the High Court.

“While noting the 2-1 split decision, Cardinal Pell maintains his innocence.

“We thank his many supporters.”

WATCH:

EARLIER @ 6.30 AM | Cardinal George Pell will today learn whether or not he will walk free from prison.

The disgraced Catholic has been behind bars for five months after he was convicted in March of sexually abusing two 13-year-old choirboys in 1996.

However, the 78-year-old appealed the sentence, with the Court of Appeal set to hand down its decision today.

It’s understood there’s three ways the decision could go – Pell could either walk free today, face a retrial, or be ordered back to prison to serve out his original sentence.

The former senior Vatican official is currently serving at least three years and eight month behind bars.

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