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We note that cardinal Pell did not have to prove anything in the trial, rather at all stages of trial, the burden of proof rested with the prosecution. It was a matter for the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that there was a realistic opportunity for the offending to take place. That involved showing that the offending was not impossible.
In his dissenting judgment, judge justice Weinberg found that at times the complainant was inclined to embellish aspects of his account. He concluded that his evidence contained discrepancies, displayed inadequacies, and otherwise lacked probative value so as to cause him to have a doubt as to the applicants guilt. He could not exclude as a reasonable possibility that some of what the complainant said was concocted, particularly in relation to the 2nd incident. Justice Weinberg found that the complainants account of the 2nd incident was entirely implausible and quite unconvincing. ... To his mind there is a significant possibility that the cardinal may not have committed the offenses, in those circumstances justice Weinberg stated that in his view the convictions could not stand.
The evidence of the opportunity witnesses varied in quality and consistency and in the degree of recall, both as between witnesses and within the evidence of individual witnesses. We cite at least two possible explanations for this. First the passage of 22 years between the alleged events and the trial meant that there was inescapably a real degree of uncertainty attaching to the memories of the opportunity witnesses. Secondly, attempting to recall particular events is all the more difficult when the events being described are, as they were here, of a kind which was repeated week after week, year after year, and involved the same participants, in the same setting, performing the same rituals, and following the same routines.
originally posted by: funbobby
a reply to: ChaoticOrder
Do they have "innocent until proven guilty" in Australian law?
originally posted by: Subaeruginosa
Yeah, obviously we do... to state the obvious!
The guy was found guilty without a doubt by a jury.
His a dirty old Pedophile and got off light, imo... He'll be out of prison in 3 years.
Seems anything but obvious considering the facts of this case.
Do you really think if they were so sure he did what is claimed the sentence would be that short?
The facts of this case are that in Australia the "innocent until proven guilty" doctrine is taken to the extreme.
The facts of this case are that Pell's trial was scrupulously above board. There was ZERO publicity during the trial for example. Unless you were in the room, you didn't know it was happening.
The facts of this case are that he had an open, fair trial, in front of a jury, with the best legal team that money could buy.
The jury was convinced beyond a reasonable doubt.
Well 1 of the 3 judges certainly seemed to think there was more than enough room for doubt.
They are better than the average person at detecting deception because it's their job.
Appeal judges are looking for errors in the proceedings, not ruling on fact. Never-the-less, all three of the judges agreed that the testimony of the principle witness was both consistent and compelling even after days of ruthless cross-examination.
That explanation from the court clearly states one of the judges felt "there is a significant possibility that the cardinal may not have committed the offenses, in those circumstances justice Weinberg stated that in his view the convictions could not stand.". The core point I'm making is that claims being made by a single person with no other direct witnesses for something that occurred 20 years is no where near enough to prove Pell is guilty beyond reasonable doubt.