Melbourne, May 27 (IANS) Disgraced Australian Cardinal George Pell will not seek a reduced sentence if the court of appeal upholds his conviction for sexually abusing two Melbourne choir-boys in the 1990s.
Pell has been behind bars since February and is due to return to court next month to fight his conviction, the Guardian reported on Monday.
But he will not be adding an appeal against the six-year prison sentence handed down by the county court chief judge, Peter Kidd, in March.
Pell was ordered to serve at least three years and eight months of that sentence after being convicted by a jury in December of one charge of sexual penetration of a child and four charges of committing an indecent act with or in the presence of a child.
Pell raped one 13-year-old choir-boy and sexually molested his friend in the sacristy of St Patrick’s Cathedral in Melbourne in 1996 when he was newly installed as archbishop.
He molested the first boy again about a month later.
Pell remains Australia’s highest-ranking Catholic, but the Vatican has launched its own investigation into his convictions.
Vatican spokesman, Alessandro Gisotti, said while the verdict was “painful”, Pell “has the right to defend himself until the last stage of appeal”.