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Pell to consider appeal for clemency


Cardinal George Pell said he would look into appealing for clemency if any of the nine Australians arrested in Bali for drug smuggling are convicted and given the death penalty.

The Sydney Morning Herald/AAP reports that he also said he would be prepared to take their case to new Pope Benedict XVI.

"I don't know whether they are guilty or not but I am certainly prepared to do that [ask for clemency]," Cardinal Pell told ABC's 7.30 Report.

"I think the punishment should be proportionate," he said. "I am certainly prepared to ask for clemency for a lesser punishment for them."

Asked if he would take the case to Pope Benedict XVI, Cardinal Pell said he would consider it.

"Yes I think I would be prepared to do that. I need to have a good look at everything but I think I would be prepared," he said.

Cardinal Pell said the arrests should act as a warning.

"I think that this terrible happening should be a clear message to other people not to get caught up into these games and risk everything," he said.

SOURCE
Pell to appeal for clemency (Sydney Morning Herald/Australian Associated Press 21/4/05)

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22 Apr 2005