Pell’s criminal barrister has not quit

Robert Richter QC, who is the criminal barrister representing Cardinal George Pell, has denied newspaper reports that he has stood down from the case.

He says these reports emerged after he expressed anger at  the court’s  ‘perverse’ guilty verdict, and are incorrect.

Initially he says he questioned his objectivity in the ongoing defence case for Pell, but decided not quit the legal team before Pell’s appeal bid.

‘It is false to say I quit the legal team, I don’t quit,’ Richter says.

Pell, 77, who is currently in custody awaiting sentencing after he was convicted of five counts of sexually assaulting two choir boys in St Patrick’s Cathedral in the 1990s, is appealing his conviction.

Pell’s solicitor Paul Galbally said it was rare for Richter, and many trial counsel, to continue to an appeal.

“As Cardinal Pell is well aware, Richter is still very much part of the legal team and will be involved right through to the end.”

Sydney barrister Bret Walker SC will lead the case through the appeal process, with Richter, junior counsel Ruth Shann and Galbally remaining part of the defence team.

The matter has been filed in the Court of Appeal. It will be followed up after Pell is sentenced on March 13.

Future legal battles include two civil cases against Pell and others flagged since his conviction was made public last week after a suppression order imposed by the court last December was lifted.

The father of one of the boys abused by Pell in 1996 has indicated his intention to sue him.

Lawyers for another man who alleged Pell molested him at a St Joseph’s Boys’ Home pool in Ballarat in the mid-1970s are expecting to file a suit in the Victoria’s Supreme Court later this week against Pell, the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne and others.

Prosecutors dropped the case against Pell in relation to that man’s allegations late last year, and dropped all final charges against Pell last week, citing a lack of evidence.

Pell denies all allegations of abuse.

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News category: World.

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