Vatican Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy Cardinal George Pell has always enjoyed due process in any Australian court case, state inquiry or royal commission concerning child sexual abuse at which he was a witness and, observation over time would lead an ordinary person to conclude that his various religious titles have afforded him what amounts to favoured treatment by both the police and legal profession.
Fair treatment was also afforded Pell in the 2002 internal Catholic Church inquiry into his past conduct as a seminarian in the early 1960s.
Given that barely a year after appearing before the Victorian Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and other Organisations Pell announced he was leaving Australia to reside permanently in the Vatican from 31 March 2014 and; after initial witness appearances on 24 & 26 March 2014 has now thrice refused to comeback to give evidence in person again at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (preferring to be questioned by video link on 21 August 2014 & this coming 29 February 2016); is it any wonder that in the face of his obvious sense of entitlement the mood has finally swung sharply against this man?
A new twist to Cardinal Pell's reluctance to return to Australia was revealed on the front page1 of the Herald Sun on 20 February 2016:
These allegations concerning Pell seem to spring from information received by Victoria Police's Sano Task Force:
ABC News, 16 February 2016:
1. Apparently the Vatican, Cardinal Pell and senior clergy in Australia are more concerned with who leaked the latest sexual abuse allegations to the media rather than focusing on the possible suffering those allegations might represent.
Having grown up in a predominately Catholic community, with one paedophile priest having free run of the local primary school and another frequently entertained in their homes by parents of young children, I understand the scale of such offending by men hiding behind the authority of black cassocks and birettas.
In fact both these men appear to have gone to their graves unaccountable for their predatory behaviour and unremarked by the wider community.
It is beyond belief that the Vatican still doesn't acknowledge the true historical scale of sexual abuse and fails to immediately request that named ordained priests (including cardinals) stand down pending the results of any such police investigations.