Public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat

Public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat

The Royal Commission will hold the second part of the public hearing regarding Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat at the County Court of Victoria, Melbourne.

This hearing will be co-ordinated with the public hearing regarding the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne and evidence from witnesses common to each hearing will be received. It is anticipated that the hearing regarding Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat will commence around 7 December 2015 depending on the progress of the hearing into the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.

The scope and purpose of the second part of this public hearing is to inquire into:

  1. The response of the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat and of other Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat to allegations of child sexual abuse against clergy or religious.
  2. The response of Victoria Police to allegations of child sexual abuse against clergy or religious which took place within the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat.
  3. Any related matters.

Cardinal Pell is expected to give evidence during the last week of the hearing.

Any person or institution who believes that they have a direct and substantial interest in the scope and purpose of the public hearing is invited to lodge a written application for leave to appear at the public hearing by 12 November 2015.

Applications for leave to appear should be made using the form available on the Royal Commission website.

Parties who were granted leave to appear in the first part of the public hearing do not need to reapply.

Leave to appear will generally be granted when an applicant:
a. has been summoned to give evidence
b. is an institution, or is a representative of an institution, that is subject to the inquiry to be undertaken
c. may be the subject of an adverse allegation.

It is not essential for a person who will appear as a witness in a hearing to apply for leave to appear – witnesses may appear and give evidence without applying for leave.

The form should be lodged with the Royal Commission via:
Email: solicitor@childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au; or
Mail: GPO Box 5283, Sydney NSW 2001.