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Cardinal Pell's lawyers to examine ABC footage

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Cardinal George Pell’s lawyers will examine interview footage from the ABC as Australia’s highest-ranking Catholic fights multiple historical sex offence charges in Victoria.

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Pell, who denies the allegations, is the most senior Catholic cleric to be charged with sex offences.

His lawyers returned to Melbourne Magistrates Court today for an administrative update about the subpoenas they sent to the ABC and investigative journalist Louise Milligan, who wrote the book Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of George Pell.

Last month, the ABC and Milligan agreed to hand over some of the material sought by Pell’s lawyers.

“There’s been production to the registry of a hard drive containing footage and transcripts,” defence barrister Ruth Shann told the court this morning.

It is understood the footage contains unedited interviews between Ms Milligan and some of the complainants who have accused Pell of historical sex offences.

Pell was not required to attend court on today.

The former Sydney and Melbourne archbishop and Ballarat priest has taken leave from his position as Vatican treasurer to defend himself.

He will face a four-week pre-trial committal hearing in March to determine if he should stand trial.

Some of the hearing will be closed to the public when the complainants give evidence about the alleged sexual offences.

– AAP

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