Cardinal George Pell is attempting to make one final appeal to overturn his child sex abuse convictions to the High Court of Australia. The 78-year-old’s lawyers lodged an application on Tuesday for special leave to appeal his convictions. If granted, the case is not expected to be heard until next year. He is serving a six-year prison term for the sexual assault of two former choirboys in the 1990s. One of the victims has since died. In a statement, lawyers representing the father of the victim on Tuesday said: “Every time Pell takes his legal fight to the next level our client is reminded of the disgusting abuse he inflicted on his son as a young choirboy.” The application comes as The Age reports how Corpus Christi, the seminary where Pell trained, served as a breeding ground for paedophile rings.
Great Barrier Reef run-off: Marine conservationists have warned that a Liberal-backed inquiry into whether farming and poor water quality harm the Great Barrier Reef will be used to attack the state Labor government. The inquiry is to report back in October 2020, the same month as the Queensland state election. The launch of the inquiry comes as the Queensland Parliament debates a bill proposing measures to reduce run-off flowing into the world's biggest coral reef. The Labor state government on Tuesday agreed to set conditions ensuring no further changes to fertiliser and sediment dumping regulations in the Great Barrier Reef for five years, once the restrictions come into force. The story comes as Guardian Australia reveals that treasurer Josh Frydenberg rejected wind turbines on Lord Howe Island when he was environmental minister, against the advice of his departmental experts.
Menstrual blood ad complaints: Advertising regulator Ad Standards has ruled that a commercial showing menstrual blood for the first time on Australian TV did not breach the industry's code of ethics. More than 600 objections were lodged, with one describing the ad as “disgusting”. Dr Elizabeth Farrell, medical director of women's healthcare service Jean Hailles, told the ABC that shaming women for menstruating is “absolutely ridiculous”.
US sues Snowden: The United States Justice Department filed a civil lawsuit on Tuesday against whistleblower Edward Snowden to recover all proceeds of his recently released memoir Permanent Record. The lawsuit alleges that Snowden published the book without submitting it to the CIA or NSA for pre-publication review, a required practice among former employees of intelligence agencies. Snowden has been living in Russia for six years, after being granted asylum there following his leak of confidential files on US mass surveillance.
UK PM faces court challenge: The United Kingdom’s Supreme Court began hearings on Tuesday into British prime minister Boris Johnson's five-week suspension of the UK Parliament. Johnson has been accused of misleading the Queen over his proroguing of parliament, which he says was to pave the way for a Queen's Speech on October 14, but which critics claim was to deny MPs the opportunity to interfere in his Brexit plans. Legal experts say the case could have implications for Australia, where suspension of parliament powers have been used tactically by state governments, including NSW in 2010.