Jailed Priest's Prosecutors Defend Their Case

By Matt C. Abbott
Renew America
January 4, 2008

The following is the text of a brief (which, as you can see, isn't exactly brief) filed by prosecutors last month in the case of Father Gerald Robinson, who "was convicted in May, 2006, for the 1980 murder of Sister Margaret Ann Pahl, a 71-year-old Catholic nun who was strangled nearly to death, then stabbed 31 times," according to a Dec. 15, 2007 article in the Toledo Blade by religion editor David Yonke.

The brief, "filed with Ohio's 6th District Court of Appeals, makes point-by-point rebuttals to arguments Robinson's attorneys made in August claiming the 69-year-old Catholic cleric did not receive a fair trial."

(Several days ago, I e-mailed one of Father Robinson's attorneys to request a copy of their appeal brief, filed in August, 2007, but I have yet to receive it. Incidentally, David Yonke's book on the case — Sin, Shame, and Secrets — contains a very disturbing report that the Toledo Catholic diocese kept documents indicating diocesan officials had paid for certain abortions. I covered said report in previous columns.)

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Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic columnist with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication, Media and Theatre from Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, and an Associate in Applied Science degree in Business Management from Triton College in River Grove, Ill. He is the former director of public affairs for the Chicago-based Pro-Life Action League and the former executive director of the Illinois Right to Life Committee. He was a contributor to The Wanderer Catholic newspaper and had numerous letters to the editor published in major newspapers, including the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, and the Chicago Sun-Times. He can be reached at


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