Vatican cardinal says he "didn't do anything" after paedophile claim

Vatican Cardinal George Pell on Thursday told an Australian royal commission investigating child sexual abuse by church clergymen that he failed to act when a student mentioned to him that a priest had been "misbehaving with boys."

"I didn't do anything about it," Pell said, adding that he later asked the school chaplain about it.

"With the experience of 40 years later, certainly I would agree that I should have done more," Pell added.

Pell spoke to the commission via video link from Rome for more than 20 hours over four days, explaining what he knew about paedophile activities by priests when he was a bishop in Ballarat and later archbishop in Melbourne in the 1970s and 1980s.

Pell, 74, also said it was a "disastrous coincidence" that there were multiple paedophile priests in the Ballarat area in 1970s.

Meanwhile, sex abuse victims who attended Pell's testimony in person in Rome said they believed he was not being truthful.

"The Ballarat survivors came to Rome to hear truth and honesty from George. We feel we have been deceived and lied to," victim Philip Nagle told reporters.

"We feel George has not been honest or truthful. George will have to live with this chosen course."

"We've watched the evidence that's been presented. There's a pattern right across the board that denial is always around," said Peter Blenkiron, another victim.

Pell, after the testimony, told reporters he hoped his appearance "contributed a bit to healing, improving the situation."

"It's been a hard slog, at least for me. I am a bit tired. But the royal commission process is designed to try to make the situation better for the future for the survivors and to prevent the repetition of all this suffering in the future," he said.

Pell, the pope's troubleshooter for financial matters, also said he will meet with some of the victims on Friday.

Last update: Thu, 03/03/2016 - 11:52
Author: 

More from World

Jammeh looted state coffers before leaving Gambia, say officials

Former Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh emptied the country’s state coffers before relinquishing power, a member of the...

Trump invites Netanyahu to meeting as new settlement action weighed

US President Donald Trump has invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to meet him at the White House next...

Trump's senior staff sworn in at White House

About 30 officials who will serve as advisers and assistants to President Donald Trump were were sworn in Sunday at...

Dozens killed in clashes in south-west Yemen

ozens of people have been killed in clashes in war-torn Yemen's south-west, a source in the Yemeni military told dpa...

Iran hands down 5-year prison sentence to British woman for spying

A court in Tehran has sentenced a British woman, who has already been held in custody in Iran for 10 months, to five...