Cardinal Goerge Pell granted final appeal against sex abuse convictions

The former Vatican official, 78, was jailed in March for six years for molesting two teenage boys in the 1990s.

The most senior Catholic to be found guilty of sexually abusing children has been granted leave to appeal by Australia’s highest court.

The decision by the High Court of Australia comes nearly a year after Cardinal George Pell was convicted of molesting two 13-year-old choirboys in Melbourne’s St Patrick’s Cathedral in the late 1990s.

Pell, 78, was sentenced to six years in prison in March and is no longer a member of Pope Francis’ Council of Cardinals or a Vatican official.

Victoria state Court of Appeal rejected his appeal in August.In a 12-page application, his lawyers argued that two state appeals court judges made an error in dismissing his appeal in August.

They claimed that requiring Pell to prove that the abuse was impossible, rather than putting the stigma of proof on prosecutors, was a mistake.