The Sydney Morning Herald reported (5 March) that Cardinal Pell’s experienced and highly successful barrister Robert Richter will not be part of the team acting on behalf of the Cardinal in the appeal against his conviction. Richter is quoted as saying he does not have ‘sufficient objectivity at this stage’.
‘I am very angry about the verdict,’ he told The Sydney Morning Herald and the Age, ‘because [the jury’s decision] was perverse’. He went on to say, ‘I think the man is an innocent man and he’s been convicted. It’s not a common experience.’
It was rare show of public emotion from one of Australia’s leading criminal lawyers, who usually comes across as unflappable in his devastating defence of his clients.
Robert Richter’s reaction says much about the process of Cardinal Pell’s conviction.