Media outlets face contempt of court charges over George Pell reporting

Court proceedings have begun against various news outlets and journalists for allegedly breaching suppression orders in their reporting on Cardinal George Pell.

There was a virtual hearing this morning in the Supreme Court of Victoria, heard by Justice John Dixon, involving dozens of publications and almost 20 journalists. Those accused of breaching the suppression order include former Today host Deborah Knight, Mamamia, Nationwide News, Nine, Macquarie Media, The Sydney Morning Herald’s editor Lisa Davies, and The Daily Telegraph’s editor Ben English.

Pell interviewed on Sky News earlier this year 

The charges were brought forward by Victoria’s director of public prosecutions Kerri Judd.

Up for discussion in court today was whether the publications and journalists – from numerous different organisation – should face the trial together, or be split into separate cases.

Pell was facing child sex abuse charges and two separate trials in 2018 when county court chief judge Peter Kidd imposed a suppression order to protect the integrity of the second trial. Pell was convicted in December of that year, however this year the High Court of Australia over turned the conviction.

The matter has been adjourned until July.


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.