The case against Pell gets worse

The Breakdown has made no claim to Pell’s guilt or innocence – no matter what the verdict has been.

As conservatives, our interest should be in the carriage of justice. It does appear that, in the Pell case, justice was only attainable after millions of dollars was spent to establish a basic right to guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Now more information is emerging as to the machinations which brought the case to trial.

This should be of particular concern to veery Australian – especially every Victorian.

Writing in the Nine papers, Chip Le Grand says:

George Pell’s legal team privately petitioned Victoria’s Director of Public Prosecutions two years ago to abandon the criminal proceedings against the cardinal, citing much of the same evidence that convinced the High Court to quash his conviction.

Had the newly appointed DPP, Kerri Judd, QC, taken up this sliding doors moment, it would have exposed her office to public outcry but avoided the injustice of Cardinal Pell spending 13 months in jail for a wrongful conviction.

Read that again.

It goes on:

Instead, she took Cardinal Pell to trial and set Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Gibson an invidious task of having to reconcile the account of the former archbishop’s sole accuser with the evidence of other witnesses that didn’t fit the case.

For the DPP to take a criminal matter to trial they must be satisfied there is a reasonable prospect of conviction and a public interest in running the case.

Cardinal Pell’s legal team submitted to Ms Judd that the prosecution was doomed to fail and the problems in the evidence should not be obscured by the strong public interest in the case.

Read that second part again.

Translation: the public wants blood and the Victorian DPP was going to give it to them.

There is much to this case which is disgraceful. It should be pursued so that no one else goes through the ordeal that Pell has endured.

COVID-19: loss of freedoms becoming more concerning by the day

It is amazing how quirt Australians have been, accepting the police state that has suddenly become our day-to-day life.

This was announced in NSW yesterday:

NSW Police will use number plate recognition technology and cameras to ensure people adhere to social distancing measures over the Easter long weekend.

NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said while it might be disappointing for people to stay at home, police will be out patrolling highways, country roads and caravan parks in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus.

This is unacceptable in Australia.

This is a sure sign that we need to dismantle these facilities once this crisis is over. The state is too powerful.

And if you need evidence of that, read this article from the law firm Stack from 2017. All of it. But start with this:

All Australian drivers need to be aware of the power of ANPR technology. The fact is that if you are caught drink driving, drug driving, or driving while disqualified or unlicensed, then the police seem to think you may do it again – but maybe not in your car.

So, the system is updated with all the details of your conviction, the vehicle you were driving and the details of all vehicles registered to the same address as you. Ping! Ping! Ping! You may be caught out, or those driving the other vehicles may be selected for random breath testing (RBT) based on the ANPR.

Despite all the information about ANPR available in the news and on the internet, drivers relentlessly get caught again and again, demonstrating that they continue to underestimate the effectiveness of this technology.

You should not break the law. But this is starting to look like harassment.

John Prine (d 7 April 2020)

A few days ago at The Breakdown we asked you to think about John Prine. He died yesterday of complications related to coronavirus.

Here’s one of his great songs. Your life is better with John Prine in it. Find out more here (especially In Spite of Ourselves, below). And at the bottom with some bloke called Roger Waters. Whoever the hell he is.