NEWCASTLE, Australia – An Australian court of appeal has overturned a conviction against the highest Catholic cleric ever convicted of concealing sexual abuse of children.
New South Wales District Court Judge Roy Ellis on Thursday welcomed the appeal of former Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson against his May conviction for concealing violence. sexual abuse committed on two altar boys by a pedophile priest in the 1970s. Ellis concluded that there was a reasonable doubt that the 68-year-old cleric had committed the crime, subject to a up to two years in prison.
Wilson served nearly four months in prison at his sister's home outside Newcastle. He had to be eligible for parole after serving six months.
The judge also dismissed the prosecution's appeal against leniency of the sentence.
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