Archbishop of Adelaide Philip Wilson Pleads Not Guilty to Abuse Cover-up at Newcastle Hearing

By Neil Keene
Daily Telegraph
May 7, 2015

ARCHBISHOP Philip Wilson has pleaded not guilty to covering up sexual abuse in the Catholic Church dating back to the 1970s.

The Archbishop of Adelaide — the highest-ranking member of the church anywhere in the world to be charged with concealing child sex abuse within Catholic ranks — did not appear for this morning’s brief hearing in Newcastle local court.

The court heard that Wilson would plead not guilty to the charge laid in March following investigations by Strike Force Lantle, established to investigate allegations of child sex abuse within the Catholic Church in the Hunter Region during the 1970s.

Police allege Wilson was a junior priest in the region in 1976 when he failed to alert authorities after learning of another priest’s abuse of a child.

Archbishop Wilson has pledged to “vigorously” defend the charge in court. Picture: James Elsby

Wilson has previously issued a statement outlining his intention to “vigorously” defend the charge in court.

His solicitor told the court this morning the initial hearing was likely to take one week, prompting him to apply to transfer the case to Sydney.

Archbishop Philip Wilson leaves the Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide after being charged in March by NSW police. Picture: Kelly Barnes

Magistrate Robert Stone said he would require further details about witnesses and other matters before any transfer could take place.

He excused Wilson again from appearing at his next court date on June 17 and asked that a brief of evidence be provided by June 3.

Wilson was free without bail being applied previously and it was not implemented at today’s hearing.








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