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Judge to decide former Adelaide archbishop's fate

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A NSW judge will decide if former Adelaide archbishop Philip Wilson should be jailed for covering up child sex abuse by a pedophile priest in the NSW Hunter region or have his conviction quashed.

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The NSW Director of Public Prosecutions is appealing magistrate Robert Stone’s decision to order Wilson to serve 12 months’ home detention, describing the sentence as inadequate and too lenient.

Newcastle District Court Judge Roy Ellis began hearing the DPP’s appeal today, as well as Wilson’s appeal against his conviction.

Judge Ellis told the court he was still reading submissions from both parties and adjourned the appeals to give him time to finish reading the material.

Defence barrister Stephen Odgers SC said Wilson was not in court today as he was serving his sentence in home detention but could appear if required.

Wilson had been facing a maximum two years’ jail but in August was sentenced to a minimum six months’ detention at his sister’s home.

He was forced to resign as archbishop of Adelaide in July after becoming the most senior Catholic clergyman in the world to be convicted of covering up child sex abuse.

-AAP

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