Monday, July 27, 2009

Pedophile Priest Terrence Melville Pidoto Refused Appeal Request

Original article

July 27, 2009 04:18pm

A PRIEST jailed for more than seven years for raping and sexually abusing four boys has been refused leave to appeal his convictions.

A Victorian County Court jury in 2007 found Catholic priest Terrence Melville Pidoto guilty of 11 charges including rape and indecently assaulting a child under 16.

He was jailed later that year for seven years and three months, and ordered to serve a minimum of five years before being eligible for parole.

Today, the Court of Appeal refused him leave to appeal his convictions.

His lawyers had argued the judge made errors during his trial.

But Justices Peter Buchanan, Frank Vincent and Julie Dodds-Streeton said the trial judge had acted appropriately.

“We are far from persuaded that any of the verdicts could be regarded as unreasonable,'' they said in their judgment.

Pidoto was ordained in 1971 aged 26 and began his sordid sex activity just a year later, the jury heard during his trial.

They heard he took one 14-year-old boy to the Corpus Christi seminary, in Melbourne's east, where he raped and abused him on several occasions between 1972 and 1973.

Assaults on two 15-year-old boys occurred at St Clare's Catholic parish in Box Hill in 1978 and 1979, while Pidoto was an assistant parish priest.

A 12-year-old boy became Pidoto's fourth victim after the priest officiated at the boy's sister's wedding.

Pidoto had denied all charges.

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